2025 Medicare payments led the agenda at last week’s meeting of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission.

After hearing presentations on the various Medicare payment systems and discussing the adequacy of current Medicare reimbursement, MedPAC’s commissioners voted to recommend the following changes in 2025 Medicare payments.

  • Inpatient and outpatient services – an update provided for in current law plus 1.5 percent and a shift to a safety-net index policy that would pay safety-net hospitals another $4 billion.
  • Physicians and other health professionals – an increase of 50 percent of the Medicare economic index and introduction of an add-on payment for services provided to low-income Medicare patients.
  • Inpatient rehabilitation hospital services – a payment reduction of five percent.
  • Skilled nursing facilities – a payment reduction of three percent.
  • Home health services – a payment reduction of seven percent.

During the two-day meeting MedPAC’s commissioners also received a status report from their staff on Medicare Part D, ambulatory surgical centers, and the Medicare Advantage program and reviewed policy options for standardized benefits in Medicare Advantage plans.

MedPAC is an independent congressional agency that advises Congress on issues involving Medicare.  While its recommendations are not binding on either Congress or the administration, MedPAC is highly influential in governing circles and its recommendations often find their way into legislation, regulations, and new public policy.

For a summary of the issues and MedPAC actions and for links to the presentations delivered during the meeting go here.