Bid delay bill passes in House

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

WASHINGTON – Now that both the House of Representatives and the Senate have passed bills to delay a second round of Medicare reimbursement cuts, lawmakers have to hammer out the details—and fast.

The House yesterday passed a version of the bill that would delay the cuts that went into effect July 1 in non-bid areas for three months until Oct. 1. The Senate on June 24 passed a version of the bill that would delay the cuts for one year until July 1, 2017.

“Now the House and the Senate need to complete the process and send a bill to the president,” said Tom Ryan, president and CEO of AAHomecare. “With the new rates now going into effect, we need our champions in both the House and Senate to find a way to move forward immediately.”

Lawmakers are expected to begin a recess on July 15 and are not due to return until after Labor Day.

The bill passed in the House, an amended version of H.R. 5210, would also require the Department of Health and Human Services to conduct a study over the course of the three-month delay to identify issues related to patient access to DME.

Although the second round of reimbursement cuts has already gone into effect, the bill would reverse reimbursement back to the rates prior to July 1.

The cuts that went into effect July 1 effectively reduce reimbursement in non-bid areas by 51.1% when combined with a first round of cuts that went into effect Jan. 1.