VIDEO: OMB Director Working to Release IFR

At a House Appropriations hearing, OMB Director Mulvaney confirms his Agency is working to release the rural relief IFR; says ‘I have probably received more calls about this than any other rule.’

Office of Management & Budget (OMB) Director Mick Mulvaney confirmed at a House Appropriations Committee hearing this week that his agency is working to release the rural relief IFR originally sent from CMS in August 2017. 

The IFR re-gained momentum when the $1.3 trillion budget package passed by Congress on March 22 did not include language from rural relief bill H.R. 4229 but did recommend that CMS the IFR.

Specifically, the IFR would resume the 50/50, blended fee schedule for rural and non-bid areas that was in effect during the phase-in of national bid expansion during Jan. 1, 2016 to June 30, 2016, and apply it to claims submitted between Aug. 1, 2017 and Dec. 31, 2018. It would also exclude home infusion drugs used with HME from competitive bidding.

Mulvaney did not detail a timeline for releasing the IFR, but noted the considerable Congressional interest in getting the rule released, adding that he had "probably received more calls about this than any other rule put together."

Those calls come after a concerted pushby the industry to call on lawmakers to urge the OMB to release the IFR. 

A statement from the American Association for Homecare lauded various advocates for helping to put pressure on Mulvaney. On such lawmaker was Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kans.), who has been lobbied heavily by his constituents.

“Thanks to ROTECH, MAMES and HME suppliers in Kansas for raising the visibility of this issue with Rep. Yoder, and for the grassroots outreach from HME stakeholders across the country who have helped make moving the IFR a priority for their legislators — ultimately making a strong impression at OMB,” a statement from AAHoemcare read. “Let's keep the pressure on and continue to build awareness and support for the IFR (see story below) and HR 4229 in the weeks ahead.”

A video of the Mulvaney-Yoder exchange can be viewed here:

About the Author

David Kopf is the Publisher and Executive Editor of HME Business and DME Pharmacy magazines. Follow him on Twitter at @postacutenews.

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