CMS' Plans Could Affect Patient Access to Lab Services
The laboratory community needs your help to delay flawed payment rates from being adopted by the Medicare program.
Recently, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its preliminary payment rates for tests reimbursed by the Medicare Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule. These preliminary rates would impose huge cuts in reimbursement for laboratory services.
In 2014, Congress passed the Protecting Access to Medicare Act (PAMA) to base Medicare CLFS reimbursement rates on the market rates for these services. Unfortunately, CMS regulations excluded data from 95 percent of clinical laboratories, including the vast majority of hospital and physician office laboratories. ASCP is concerned that these preliminary payment rates are significantly underpriced relative to the true market rate. Unless there is a change, these rates will go into effect on January 1, 2018, and if they do, Medicare beneficiary access to clinical laboratory services could be at risk.
ASCP is asking you to contact your Members of Congress and ask them to urge CMS to delay implementation of the new fee schedule until CMS can develop new payment rates that reflect all segments of the market for laboratory services. Your email will help make a difference, but it is vital to act right now.
Please use the ASCP eAdvocacy Center to tell your representatives in Washington you are concerned.
Thank you for taking the time to protect Medicare beneficiary access!