COA Submits Comments to CMS on Devastating Fee Schedule Cuts

Created on: Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Dr. David Eagle, COA President, submitted comments to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on the 2013 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule. CMS has not disappointed once again as the agency is proposing to cut payments to medical oncology (by 1%), diagnostic imaging (4%), and radiation therapy (14%), with freestanding radiation treatment centers being cut by 19%. All of these reimbursement cuts are in addition to the prospect of a roughly 30% SGR-related cut and an across the board 2% Medicare sequestration cut. The sequestration cut is deceptive because it will have an inordinately adverse impact on Medicare drug reimbursement, effectively reducing ASP + 6% to a little over ASP + 4%.

In the CMS comment letter on behalf of the COA Board of Directors, Dr. Eagle notes the severe impact that Medicare payment cuts have already had on cancer care. Clinic closings, patient access problems, and drug shortages are all due to a destructive series of reimbursement cuts that CMS has made to cancer care. In fact, in the proposed rule CMS actually acknowledges the relationship between Medicare drug reimbursement and the drug shortage crisis.

Click here to download a PDF file of the COA comment letter.

We are holding a Capitol Hill day on 9/20 to let members of Congress and their staff know about the devastating fee schedule cuts.

Additionally, COA has updated its fee impact model to allow you to estimate the impact of the proposed Medicare fee cuts to your practice. The model includes medical oncology, as well as imaging and radiation, if you have these services. Also included is the impact of sequestration and the SGR cuts on your practice operations. Please contact Bo Gamble at bgamble@COAcancer.org if you have any questions about using the model or its output.

Click here to download the COA 2013 CMS Impact Model.

Attachments

COA Comment Letter (PDF FILE)




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