Wheelchair supplier highlights competitive bidding changes
NEW YORK, Feb. 26, 2013—Med Supply Shop, a leading online retailer of power wheelchairs and other medical supplies, is currently highlighting the expansion of the Medicare Competitive Bidding Program. The supplier wants to ensure that customers are aware of the upcoming changes. The Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics and Supplies (DMEPOS) Competitive Bidding Program was initially mandated by Congress through the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA).
The Competitive Bidding Program, administered by The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), is designed to alter both how Medicare beneficiaries obtain medical equipment and how suppliers of durable medical equipment are reimbursed for services provided to Medicare beneficiaries. Round 1 of Competitive Bidding began in nine Competitive Bidding Areas in nine product categories on January 1, 2011. Round 2 of the program is due to launch July 1, 2013 in a total of 91 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), which are in turn sub-divided into Competitive Bidding Areas (CBAs).
The program's aim is to improve the Medicare methodology for establishing DMEPOS payment amounts, which in turn is intended to reduce beneficiary’s expenses as well as cut costs for the Medicare program while still ensuring beneficiaries retain access to quality products and services.
Currently, traditional Medicare beneficiaries are permitted to choose any durable medical equipment supplier of their choice. However, when Round 2 launches, Medicare beneficiaries residing in Competitive Bidding Areas could see their access to home medical supply companies seriously impacted.
Some of the products included in the Competitive Bidding Program include: oxygen equipment and supplies; manual and standard power wheelchairs; scooters and related accessories; enteral nutrients, equipment and supplies; hospital beds and related accessories; constant positive airway pressure (CPAP) and respiratory assistive devices (RADS), and related supplies and accessories; and walkers and related accessories.