It is critical that the 109th Congress stop imminent cuts in Medicare reimbursements to doctors and hospitals before we adjourn in December.  When the Medicare Modernization Act was signed into law it included provisions to reclassify certain hospitals to higher and fairer reimbursement rate status.  These provisions are set to expire at the end of this calendar year.  For many hospitals, not extending these provisions will put them at a competitive disadvantage and jeopardize their very ability to stay in business.  Similarly, failure to extend other provisions of the Medicare Modernization Act could mean a cut in provider reimbursements by as much as 5 percent.

I have been working hard with my colleagues for several months to ensure that extension of these provisions is passed through Congress before the end of the year.  In fact, I recently authored a letter, also signed by over half of the New Jersey Congressional delegation, to House leadership to urge the addition of the extension of these provisions to our agenda before Congress adjourns next month.  The response has been encouraging, but I will not rest easy until the extensions are in signed into law.  This could be a real crisis for our nation's healthcare system and it must be averted before the adjournment of the 109th Congress.