Bill seeks to add ‘disposable medical technology’ to DME benefit

Thursday, February 26, 2015

WASHINGTON – Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-N.C., introduced a bill on Monday that would increase access to disposable medical technologies for Medicare beneficiaries.

Co-sponsored by Rep. George Butterfield, D-N.C., the Patient Access to Disposable Technology Act of 2015, H.R. 1018, would establish “disposable medical technology” and incorporate it into existing DME coverage, allowing Medicare beneficiaries to use less expensive equipment at home.

“Many of our constituents rely on disposable medical devices that provide healing in the home setting following hospital stays,” stated Ellmers in a press release. “While private health plans cover these innovative devices, Medicare does not—which results in patients returning to the more-expensive hospital setting to receive the care they need.”

Under the current DME benefit, descriptions of eligible equipment are limited to items such as crutches, wheelchairs and oxygen tanks.