Accreditation: CMS plans to make announcement 'soon'

Sunday, November 12, 2006

WASHINGTON - CMS may announce the names of the organizations that will accredit providers as part of its national competitive bidding program this week, an official said during an Open Door forum Nov. 8.

"So, when are the accrediting organizations going to be announced?" said CMS's Sandra Bastinelli. "Soon. I'm hoping by this same time next Wednesday (Nov. 15), we'll have that released to you."

CMS required accrediting organizations to submit applications for approval or "deeming authority" by Oct. 2. In the Federal Register, the agency indicated that it would "make every effort" to release a list of approved organizations in no more than 30 days.

Accrediting organizations were disappointed when Nov. 2 came and went without an announcement.

When a decision has been made, CMS will post a release, as well as contact information for the approved accrediting organizations, on this Web site:

The Web site will also include information on what each organization is approved to accredit, Bastinelli said.

"Just because they are approved to accredit, they are not approved to accredit you for every single thing--every supply and every prosthetic and orthotic," she said.

CMS officials couldn't provide any additional information on competitive bidding, however. When a caller asked when the agency would release the 10 metropolitan statistical areas or MSAs where competitive bidding will take place in 2007, an official answered, amidst laughter: "As soon as possible."