Lawmakers push for additional bid relief

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Thursday, September 20, 2018

WASHINGTON – HME industry champion Cathy McMorris Rodgers has released a congressional sign-on letter to CMS, HHS and OMB asking for additional relief for HME as part of the proposed rule currently under consideration, according to AAHomecare.

Rep. Rodgers, R-Wash., encourages stakeholders to ask their members in the House of Representatives to sign on to the letter before it closes on Friday, Sept. 28.

The letter expresses support for CMS’s plans to suspend competitive bidding while it makes changes to the program, and extend relief for rural and non-contiguous areas through 2020.

The letter also advocates, however, for additional improvements to the proposed rule, including:

  • Increasing reimbursement rates in competitive bidding areas until the next bid round is implemented: “Since CMS has recognized these SPAs are deficient due to the bid program’s median price methodology, we are concerned that these rates are inadequate, particularly when there no longer remains the increased market share that was the balancing rationale for the lower bid prices in the first place,” the letter states.
  • Extending relief to all non-competitive bidding areas by implementing the 50/50 blended rates to all those areas until the end of 2020.
  • Improving access to liquid oxygen by considering a more comprehensive effort to modernize Medicare oxygen policies, including those for liquid oxygen.


Other original co-signers to the letter include Reps. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., Diana DeGette, D-Colo., and Dave Loebsack, D-Iowa.