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Medicare pay for arthroscopic surgery down almost 30% since 2000: 4 notes

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Medicare reimbursement for orthopedic arthroscopic surgery declined from 2000 to 2019, according to a study published in The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery.

Researchers used the Physician Fee Schedule Look-Up Tool on the CMS website to calculate national reimbursement averages available from 2000 to 2019. They adjusted the average prices for inflation using the consumer price index.

Four findings:

1. Medicare reimbursement to physicians for the 20 most common arthroscopic procedures dropped almost 30 percent over the past two decades.

2. The mean reimbursement for physicians was $906 in 2000 and $632 in 2019.

3. The adjusted mean reimbursement rate for all arthroscopic procedures studied dropped 1.8 percent per year.

4. The mean compound annual growth rate for arthroscopic surgery reimbursement was minus 1.9 percent over the study time period.

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