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Medicare Program; February 23-24, 2004, Meeting of the Practicing Physicians Advisory Council

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Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), HHS.




In accordance with section 10(a) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, this notice announces a meeting of the Practicing Physicians Advisory Council (the Council). The Council will be meeting to discuss certain proposed changes in regulations and carrier manual instructions related to physicians' services, as identified by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (the Secretary). These meetings are open to the public.

Meeting Registration: Persons wishing to attend this meeting must register for the meeting at least 72 hours in advance by contacting the Council Administrative Officer, Cheryl Slay, at or (410)-786-7054. Persons who are not registered in advance will not be permitted into the Humphrey Building and thus will not be able to attend the meeting. Persons attending the meeting will be required to show a photographic identification, preferably a valid driver's license, before entering the building.


The meeting is scheduled for February 23, and February 24, 2004 from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. e.s.t.


The meeting will be held in Room 800, at the Hubert H. Humphrey Building, 200 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20201.

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Kenneth Simon, M.D., Executive Director, Practicing Physicians Advisory Council, 7500 Security Boulevard, Mail Stop C4-11-27, Baltimore, MD 21244-1850, (410) 786-3377. Please refer to the CMS Advisory Committees Information Line: (1-877-449-5659 toll free)/(410-786-9379 local) or the Internet at​faca/​ppac/​default.asp for additional information and updates on committee activities. News media representatives should contact the CMS Press Office, (202) 690-6145.

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The Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (the Secretary) is mandated by section 1868 of the Social Security Act (the Act) to appoint a Practicing Physicians Advisory Council (the Council) based on nominations submitted by medical organizations representing physicians. The Council meets quarterly to discuss certain proposed changes in regulations and carrier manual instructions related to physicians' services, as identified by the Secretary. To the extent feasible and consistent with statutory deadlines, the consultation must occur before publication of the proposed changes. The Council submits an annual report on its recommendations to the Secretary and the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services not later than December 31 of each year.

The Council consists of 15 physicians, each of whom has submitted at least 250 claims for physicians' services under Medicare in the previous year. Members of the Council include both participating and nonparticipating physicians, and physicians practicing in rural and underserved urban areas. At least 11 of the members of the Council must be physicians described in section 1861(r)(1) of the Act; that is, State-licensed doctors of medicine or osteopathy. The remaining members may include dentists, podiatrists, optometrists, and chiropractors. Members serve for overlapping 4-year terms; terms of more than 2 years are contingent upon the renewal of the Council by appropriate action before its termination. Section 1868(a) of the Act provides that nominations to the Secretary for Council membership must be made by medical organizations representing physicians.

The Council held its first meeting on May 11, 1992. The current members are: James Bergeron, M.D.; Ronald Castellanos, M.D.; Rebecca Gaughan, M.D.; Carlos R. Hamilton, M.D.; Joseph Heyman, M.D.; Dennis K. Iglar, M.D.; Joe Johnson, D.O.; Christopher Leggett, M.D.; Barbara McAneny, M.D.; Angelyn L. Moultrie-Lizana, D.O.; Laura B. Powers, M.D.; Michael T. Rapp, M.D. (Council Chair); Amilu Rothhammer, M.D.; Robert L. Urata, M.D.; and Douglas L. Wood, M.D.

Council members will be updated on the status of recommendations made. The agenda will provide for discussion and comment on the following topics:

  • 2004 Physician Fee Schedule.
  • Physicians Regulatory Issues Team Update. Start Printed Page 3372
  • Sustainable Growth Rate.
  • Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003.
  • Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act.
  • End Stage Renal Disease Quality Initiative.
  • Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) Codes and Evaluation & Management.
  • Adjusted Wholesale Pricing.
  • Outcome and Assessment Information Set and Home Care Benefits.
  • Medical Malpractice Premiums.
  • Wheelchair Billing Brochure.

For additional information and clarification on the topics listed, call the contact person in the “For Further Information Contact” section of this notice.

Individual physicians or medical organizations that represent physicians wishing to make 5-minute oral presentations on agenda issues must contact the Executive Director by 12 noon, Friday, February 13, 2004, to be scheduled. Testimony is limited to agenda topics. The number of oral presentations may be limited by the time available. A written copy of the presenter's oral remarks must be submitted to Cheryl Slay at no later than 12 noon, Friday, February 13, 2004, for distribution to Council members for review before the meeting. Physicians and organizations not scheduled to speak may also submit written comments to the Executive Director and Council members. The meeting is open to the public, but attendance is limited to the space available. Individuals requiring sign language interpretation or other special accommodation must contact Cheryl Slay at or (410) 786-7054 at least 10 days before the meeting.

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Authority: (Section 1868 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395ee) and section 10(a) of Public Law 92-463 (5 U.S.C. App. 2, section 10(a)); 45 C.F.R. Part 11) (Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Program No. 93.773, Medicare—Hospital Insurance; and Program No. 93.774, Medicare—Supplementary Medical Insurance Program)

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Dated: January 13, 2004.

Dennis G. Smith,

Acting Administrator, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

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[FR Doc. 04-1150 Filed 1-22-04; 8:45 am]