B² the Doc Fix

If Congress doesn’t agree to a solution by April 1, doctors who participate with Medicare could take a 21 percent cut in payments.

House Speaker John Boehner and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi are working together to change the way Medicare pays doctors.

Even while both sides of the aisle are aligning to meet the realities of how the costs of healthcare are outpacing economic growth, some worry the proposed payment system could add to the deficit.

Good thing it’s Tuesday, B² day.

Here’s this week’s likely media question and the B² (block and bridge) that sets the narrative straight:

Q: “What is Congress doing to make sure our doctors’ pay remains stable?”

B²: “Quality healthcare starts with treating our doctors fairly. This is exactly why Congress needs a permanent fix to doctors’ pay, so we can remove the cloud of uncertainty they have faced over the past two decades. We can get there by <insert talking point>.”

Wherever you take the conversation next, try to avoid definitions of the Sustainable Growth Rate or the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Your inevitably long-winded answer isn’t going to earn you air time. Instead, communicate respect for our nation’s doctors, an honorable profession now in turmoil, and how we owe it to them and our nation to reform Medicare – that’s where the true fix is needed.