Coding: What's next?
Implementation of the new codes for power mobility devices will proceed as follows:
- Later this summer--The DMERCs and CMS are scheduled to follow up with an LCD and a fee schedule. The DMERCs must give 30 days advance notice before implementing an LCD, but the industry's not sure whether they will provide a comment period, said Cara Bachenheimer, vice president of government relations for Invacare. "They may consider last year's draft LCD as the draft that they got comments on," she said. "We don't necessarily agree with that, because there were serious issues in that original draft."
- Aug. 1, 2007--Manufacturers have until this date to have their equipment retested by an independent testing laboratory based on new testing requirements.
- Jan. 1, 2008--Fee schedule amounts will be revised to reflect any changes made to product classification due to retesting.
Seth Johnson, vice president of government affairs for Pride Mobility Products, said he's "a little concerned with the timeframe" for implementing the new codes.
"This is a significant change to the industry," he said. "We're going to 64 codes from five--one power scooter code and four power wheelchair codes. Think of all the provider and physician education that needs to take place."