The New York Times published an article Aug. 29 that highlights the role of Congress in the proposed cuts to the End-Stage Renal Disease bundled payment system.

Author Eric Lipton interviews small and large providers about the impact of the cuts and delves into the industry's efforts to enlist Congressional members—many who instructed the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to make the cuts in the first place—to pressure the agency to reconsider. The article also quotes Richard Berkowitz, author of the recent blog post on NephrologyNews.com, "Smoke and mirrors: What is really behind protests over the ESRD bundle payment cut?"
 
“Patients should not be used as pawns in a series of scare tactics to protest a change in a payment,” Berkowitz, of Skokie, Ill., said in the blog post. He told The Times he was repeatedly pressured when he recently visited his dialysis clinic to sign a petition protesting the cuts.

Read the full article.