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  • Fewer Doctors Are Opting Out of Medicare  Modern Healthcare by Virgil Dickson —  The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) saw a sharp decrease in the number of providers opting out of Medicare in 2017, after several years where thousands indicated that they did not want to participate in the program. For years, the CMS had few providers opting out of Medicare, with the number first hitting triple digits in 2010, with 130. But those numbers jumped to over 1,600 opt-out requests going into effect in 2013, and spiking at 7,400 in 2016. Opt-outs dropped to just 3,732 in 2017, according to data released by the CMS Monday. One theory is that MACRA ended the need for providers to renew opt-out affidavits every two years; now opt-outs can be indefinite, and providers must ask to rejoin the program. The drop in opt-outs may also stem from the nation's aging population. 

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