CMS to make big power wheelchair announcement tomorrow

Sunday, September 7, 2003

September 8, 2003

BALTIMORE - The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) plans to make a major announcement tomorrow morning on its plans to toughen enforcement and audit procedures for the provision of power wheelchairs.
Industry observers have been expecting some sort of action from CMS as claims for reimbursement of the K0011 power wheelchair have grown faster than any other significant DMEPOS product category. In March, for example, K0011 claims in Region C surged by 27% over the previous month.
While some contend that much of this growth can be traced to burgeoning awareness of geriatric mobility and the benefits available to seniors, several recent scandals, including a major rash of wheelchair fraud in Houston, have demonstrated that the K0011 is ripe for abuse.
Said one healthcare attorney about the coming CMS edict: “Here comes the big problem and a lot of noise.”