Close-up of Money and Flag.

The National Association for Home Care & Hospice and the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization recently urged Washington lawmakers to prevent the statutory Pay-As-You-Go sequestration cuts to Medicare from taking effect at the end of this congressional session.

In a letter to House and Senate leaders, NAHC, NHPCO and five other provider groups said failure to waive PAYGO would result in $38 billion in cuts to Medicare next year, which would have a devastating and destabilizing impact on healthcare access. 

“In previous years Congress has stepped in to pass legislation to avoid triggering PAYGO,” the letter stated. “Congress once again needs to waive these cuts, to prevent them from taking effect in 2023. We urge Congress to prevent these cuts. Now is not the time for reductions in Medicare payments to providers.” 

Home health also is contending with a $635 million cut scheduled to take effect in 2023 related to the final Medicare home health rule.

The Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010 requires across-the-board reductions in Medicare payments to providers, including home health and hospice agencies. Congress paused a 4% PAYGO cut in 2020 at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. The cut was supposed to resume this year, but Congress voted in late 2021 to delay it another year.  

PAYGO is aimed at preventing the introduction of any new laws that would increase projected budget deficits.