Signature Deadline for House CRT Letter Pushed to Sept. 18

Providers called on to redouble efforts to get their Representatives to sign Congressional letter urging CMS to stop basing reimbursement for manual CRT accessories on competitive bidding rates.

Reps. John Larson (D-Conn.) and Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) have exited the deadline to collect signatures for a Congressional sign-on letter insisting that CMS permanently stop applying competitive bidding rates to reimbursement for accessories for manual CRT wheelchairs. The new deadline is September 18.

Introduced by Reps. John Larson (D-Conn.) and Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.), the letter aims to stave off what would likely be considerable reimbursement cuts for those items as early as Round 2021. Furthermore, the accessories would create policy consistency given that power CRT chairs were already removed from competitive bidding, and pricing for the accessories is not based on competitive bidding rates.

The 2008 Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act (MIPPA) exempted CRT wheelchairs from the competitive bidding program. However, in 2016, CMS moved to use competitive bidding rates to reduce reimbursement for the accessories for CRT chairs. Congress and stakeholders worked to convince CMS to modify its policy in 2017, but CMS only stopped applying bidding-derived pricing to reimbursement for power CRT chair accessories; it maintained the policy for manual CRT chair accessories. 

To support the effort, HME and CRT stakeholders should visit protectmymobility.org to access an online form for messaging their lawmakers. They can also download a position paper, the full Congressional letter, and see a list of current signers. 

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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