WASHINGTON, D.C. (December 2, 2015)—A new study focusing on health outcomes for patients subject to the competitive bidding program using diabetic testing products finds that the program led to adverse health outcomes, including higher inpatient costs as well as increased hospitalization and death, for diabetic Medicare beneficiaries. The report also criticizes CMS for their evaluation of the program and their failure to show the true impact the bidding program has on Medicare beneficiaries.  

The study, titled “Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Competitive Bidding Program: Assessment of Impact on Beneficiary Acquisition of Diabetes-Testing Supplies and Durable Medical Equipment Prosthetics Orthotics and Supplies–Associated Health Outcomes” was released yesterday by the National Minority Quality Forum. AAHomecare is among the organizations providing support for the study, along with Abbott, Acelity Inc., LifeScan/Johnson & Johnson Diabetes Solutions Companies; Roche Diabetes Care, US Healthcare Supply, and US MED.

The report’s findings reinforce calls from leaders in the HME sector, as well as from patient and disability organizations, for further evaluation on the impact that competitive bidding has on beneficiaries. AAHomecare plans to use these findings to generate additional support among patient advocacy groups for our efforts to make needed changes in the bidding program, and to use with policymakers on Capitol Hill to advance bidding-related legislative initiatives.

Read the full report as well as AAHomecare’s summary of the findings.