Sunday, October 21, 2012
A Modest Proposal: Sustainable Growth Rate Formula for Congress
The Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) is a method currently used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in the United States to control spending by Medicare on physician services. Enacted by the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 to amend Section 1848(f) of the Social Security Act, the SGR replaced the Medicare Volume Performance Standard (MVPS), which was the previous method that CMS used in an attempt to control costs] Generally, this is a method to ensure that the yearly increase in the expense per Medicare beneficiary does not exceed the growth in GDP.
In a letter to the Senate Finance Committee, scores of physician groups plead for repeal of the sustainable growth rate formula, which would cut doctors' Medicare pay by 27%for repeal of the sustainable growth rate formula, which would cut doctors' Medicare pay by 27%.
Cheryl Clark, “SGR Repeal Backed by 110 Physician Groups,” Health Leaders Media, October 19, 2012
October 21 - I have a modest proposal to make: that we apply the SGR to Congress.To keep it simple: this is how the Congressional SGR would work.
1) Federal spending budget in 2013, $3.803 trillion
2) Federal receipts in 2013, $2902 trillion
3) Differences between spending and receipts, $901 billion
4) Percentage difference between spending and receipts= overspending of 31.0%0.
Now take the salaries of Congress members and Senators, $174,000
5) Take 23.7% of $174,000 and subtract from $174,000, leaving $121.06
6) Tie the 31.0 SGR for Congress to the 27.0% cut for physicians
Tweet: This modest proposal suggests a Sustainable Growth Rate Formula for Congress in 2013 which would reduce their pay from $174,000 to $121,060.