On April 2, 2009, the House and Senate approved separate budget resolutions (H.Con.Res. 85 and S.Con.Res. 13, respectively) that establish nonbinding spending and revenue frameworks for the Congressional committees for fiscal year (FY) 2010. Both bills include deficit-neutral “reserve funds” authorizing committees to adopt health reform measures if offsetting revenues are specified. Such reforms could include, among other things, provisions to make health coverage more affordable, expand access to insurance, improve quality, reduce health care costs, and preserve choice of providers and health plans. In a notable difference, the House bill would allow the Senate to use a procedure called reconciliation to approve health reform legislation by a simple majority, effectively blocking the minority’s ability to force Senate leaders to muster 60 votes in favor of a health reform bill. The House bill also would require the Committees on Ways and Means and Energy and Commerce each to identify $1 billion in health care savings over five years. The Senate adopted an amendment that would prohibit adoption of President Obama’s proposal to change the tax treatment of charitable contributions to pay for health reform. In addition, the House and Senate differ in their approach to fixing the Medicare physician fee schedule formula, which now would trigger an across-the-board payment cut of approximately 21% in 2010. Specifically, the Senate would require that any change to the physician fee schedule be done on a deficit-neutral basis, while the House allocates approximately $87 million over five years/$285 billion over 10 years to reform the formula. The Senate also calls for the importation of prescription drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) from a specified list of countries, and it would establish a deficit-neutral reserve fund to address Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement inequities that lead to access problems in rural areas. Both the House and Senate resolutions also provide up to $311 million for the Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control program for FY 2010. Lawmakers will work to iron out differences between the two measures when Congress returns from recess on April 20, 2009.