November 21, 2023
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released the final rule and payment policies for next year. Due to budget neutrality rules, the 2024 physician fee schedule includes a 3.4% payment cut that will take effect unless Congress acts to stop the cut.
In the final fee schedule, the 2024 Medicare conversion factor was decreased from $33.8872 to $32.7375, with a corresponding reduction in anesthesia rates. Noridian—California’s Medicare contractor—has updated its 2024 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule to reflect these changes.
While there were also several draft legislative proposals circulating in Congress that would have resulted in substantial Medicare geographic payment cuts, the California Medical Association (CMA) was successful in stopping these proposals.
CMA continues to urge Congress to stop the 3.4% cut and take action to provide financial stability for physician practices. Physician payment has already declined by 26% over the last two decades. With an expected 4.6% rise in health care inflation this year, the net impact on physician payments will be an 8% decrease in 2024, which will be devastating for physician practices and patient access to care in California.