Device manufacturers need to help define how a new proposal on competitive bidding by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) would be implemented, said experts at a recent industry conference hosted by AdvaMed.
"The new rule was designed to harness competition [and] bring value in terms of reduced prices," said Laurence Wilson, director of the CMS' Chronic Care Policy Group, May 3.
The CMS announced a proposed rule April 24 to lower Medicare costs for certain durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics and supplies (DMEPOS) by allowing competitive bidding among manufacturers.
In making its pricing determinations, the agency must factor in the total medical expenditures for a particular type of product or product category, the number of suppliers and the savings potential for Medicare and beneficiaries, Wilson told attendees at the Future of Medicare Policies for Medical Technologies conference.
Under the proposed rule, bidding would be phased in starting in 2007 in 10 of the largest metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) except New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago. In 2009, the program would expand to 80 of the largest MSAs and into other areas after that.
"That is likely to be as popular a process as base closings," said Wilson. The rule does not identify which 10 metropolitan service areas will be chosen, and it does not establish objective criteria for making those determinations. ()a href="http://www.fdanews.com/ddl/33_19/" target=_blank>