Just like that: Congress overrides Bush veto of therapy-cap measure

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Just like that: Congress overrides Bush veto of therapy-cap measure
Just like that: Congress overrides Bush veto of therapy-cap measure
Both chambers of Congress acted swiftly late Tuesday to override a presidential veto of a bill that extends exceptions to therapy caps for many long-term care residents. Congress' override also shelves a 10.6% payment cut for physicians.

The bill automatically became law when the Senate voted 70-26 around dinnertime to bypass the president's veto. Just hours earlier, the House had overwhelmingly voted 383-41 to override the veto, which Bush issued earlier in the day. He had threatened to use it for weeks.

None of Tuesday's votes was unexpected after the Senate broke a logjam last week, passing the bill by a veto-proof margin. As a result, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced during a conference call Tuesday early afternoon that the agency would automatically reprocess any claims negatively affected since July 1. That's the date payment provisions were to change for doctors' rates and beneficiaries under Medicare Part B therapy caps coverage. Earlier CMS action, however, had held off processing of claims for the last two weeks, pending the outcome of possible legislative action.

President Bush called the pending veto override "fiscally irresponsible" because it would pay for the reversal of the physicians' pay cut by taking away patient choices via funding cuts to the Medicare Advantage program.