Study: Primary care would lose 11% with Medicare-only rates

May 7, 2010

Average hourly compensation would drop by 11.4 percent for primary care specialties if physicians were compensated at only Medicare-level reimbursements, according to a new study.

Average hourly compensation would drop by 11.4 percent for primary care specialties if physicians were compensated at only Medicare-level reimbursements, according to a study by the Urban Institute.

The policy research firm compared compensation figures from a 2008 survey from the Medical Group Management Association for 26 specialties and the Medicare rates for 2007, adjusting for geography.

Across all specialties, mean hourly compensation would fall by about 13 percent, from about $155 to $134 an hour, if all services studied were paid under the Medicare Fee Schedule. Family medicine and pediatrics would lose between 11 and 13 percent.

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