A U.S. Senator has spearheaded a sign-on letter asking the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to postpone plans to expand the competitive bidding program for home medical equipment.
Senator John Hoeven (R-N.D.) launched the effort in response to a recent announcement that competitive bidding will be expanded nationwide by 2016 beyond the 100 areas around the country in which the program was launched.
The sign-on letter is addressed to CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner.
“I am deeply concerned about how the program impacts the senior citizens and people with disabilities in my community,” reads a portion of the letter Hoeven is encouraging people to sign. “I fear that competitive bidding will reduce the number of quality medical equipment providers in the country, therefore reduce beneficiary access to home medical equipment.”
Tavenner is asked to stop any further action of expanding the bidding program until the findings of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Inspector General’s investigations of the program have been presented to Congress, and elected officials have had “adequate” time to review the OIG’s conclusions.
Many in the home medical equipment industry are opposed to an expansion of the program.
“Please take action to stop the expansion of competitive bidding,” the letter urges senators.
May 15 is the last day to sign the letter.
Written by Alyssa Gerace