Hours after Senate Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont) and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) released the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act (also known as the "jobs bill") with several key provisions for physical therapists, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev) said he would rewrite the bill when lawmakers return to Washington after the week-long Presidents Day recess, says the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) newsletter, Alexandria, Va.

At this time, Reid has not indicated his plans for the Medicare provisions that were included in the HIRE Act released by Baucus and Grassley.

As drafted by Baucus and Grassley, the HIRE Act would reinstate the Medicare therapy cap exceptions process for 1 year, retroactive to the beginning of 2010; extend the current hold on the 2009 Medicare fee schedule conversion factor until September 30, 2010; and would reinstate Medicare’s Geographic Practice Cost Indices (GPCI) floor for 2010, which would increase payments to rural providers.

APTA is continuing to aggressively lobby Congress as a growing number of beneficiaries are reaching the cap and the February 28 deadline for the 2009 fee schedule conversation factor hold approaches. The association will provide updates to members as they become available.

Keep up to date on the cap and other issues with information bulletins posted on APTA’s Latest Legislative Action Web page.

[Source: APTA]