Medicare Bill Is Law
After months of haggling, the saga is over. Congress today voted to override the White House veto of legislation staving off a steep cut to doctors who see Medicare patients. The vote in the House was 383 to 81, while the Senate count was 70 to 26. The debate set two powerhouse lobbying groups — the physicians and the insurance industry — against each other, with the docs coming out on top this time around.
Not that this is the last time Congress will have this debate. The bill prevents the physician cuts only through 2009. Afterwards, Medicare’s payment formula kicks in with another trim for 2010. It’s sure to be one of many headaches inherited by whatever administration takes the White House in January.