A new bill introduced in the House of Representatives designed to implement market-based pricing for home medical equipment and services such as wheelchairs, oxygen therapy, and other durable medical equipment and services has recently been endorsed by the American Association for Homecare, according to a news release. The release reports that the bill, H.R. 6490, is intended establish a market pricing program as a budget-neutral replacement for the current Medicare bidding program for home medical equipment and services.

Tyler Wilson, American Association for Homecare president, notes that the organization embraces the competition. “This market-based system proposed in this new legislation would ensure that Medicare beneficiaries receive the services and equipment that they need and ensure that the government pays competitive prices for the equipment and services provided,” Wilson says.

The release notes that last year, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services implemented a bidding program for durable medical equipment and services in nine areas that included Charlotte, NC, Cincinnati and Cleveland, Ohio, Dallas, Texas, Kansas City, Mo, Miami and Orlando, Fla, Pittsburg, Pa, and Riverside, Calif. However, auction experts including the ALS Association, United Spinal, the National Family Caregivers Association have reportedly expressed concern that Medicare beneficiaries will continue to see declines in access to medically required equipment and care under the current bidding system. 

According to the release, the market pricing program finds its origins in recommendations by economists and auction experts who have studied the current program. The new program features an auction system engineered to establish market-based prices and would require Medicare to make functional changes to ensure the long-term viability of the program. 

For more information about the bill, click here

Source: American Association for Homecare