The impact of the 2024 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule set by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on the field of anesthesia. Although there are few changes specific to anesthesia, there are notable adjustments that anesthesiologists and certified registered nurse anesthetists should be aware of.
Key changes in the fee schedule include:
Reduction in Conversion Factor: The finalized physician fee schedule conversion factor for 2024 is set at 32.74, which is a decrease of 1.15 from the 2023 conversion factor. This reduction equates to a 3.4% decrease in Medicare provider reimbursement rates.
Anesthesia Conversion Factor: The anesthesia conversion factor for 2024 is set at 20.4349, a drop of 0.69 from the current year’s conversion factor. This represents a reimbursement reduction of 3.27%. While some specialties like endocrinology and family practice may see an increase in reimbursement, anesthesia and other specialties will experience a cut in their reimbursement rates.
Changes to Medicare and Medicaid Provider Enrollment Process: The final rule includes modifications to the provider enrollment process for Medicare and Medicaid. Notable changes include the introduction of a “stay of enrollment” action to ease reenrollment burdens, a requirement for Medicare providers and suppliers to report changes in practice locations within 30 days, new denial authorities, and clarifications on the duration providers will remain in the Medicaid termination database.
The American Society of Anesthesiologists has released a statement urging Congress to block the upcoming payment cut for anesthesiologists and other Medicare providers.