On Friday, March 30, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) briefly posted the top 10 cities to be involved in the first wave of competitive bidding on its Medicare contractor Web site.
The list of the initial 10 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) slated for competitive bidding were only posted for a short time on the Medicare Competitive Bidding Implementation Contractor (CBIC) Web site, leaving visitors to wonder if it was in fact the final list.
The fact that Houston, home to the fraud and abuse of the Wheeler/Dealer power wheelchair scandal in 2002, surprised many people in the industry.
The list of MSAs includes:
- Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord; NC-SC
- Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN
- Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor OH
- Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX
- Kansas City, MO-KS
- Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Miami Beach,FL
- Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA
- Orlando-Kissimmee, FL
- Pittsburgh, PA
- San Juan-Caguas-Guaynabo, PR
Product categories and the final rule have not been issued at press time, although many industry insiders expected it to be released at the same time as the top 10 MSAs.
CMS has contracted with Palmetto GBA, the CBIC, to conduct some functions related to the administration of the competitive bidding program, including preparing the request for bids (RFB), performing bid evaluations, and ensuring that providers meet all applicable financial and quality standards.
The competitive bidding CMS Web site can be accessed at www.cms.hhs.gov/competitiveacqfordmepos/01_overview.asp. Once you are there, scroll down to “Related Links Outside CMS” and click on the link to “Contractor (CBIC) Web site.”