Radiation reclassification halted
Yet another positive result from the budget bill ends an effort by CMS to reclassify radiation for prostate cancer, resulting in reduced reimbursement rates for prostate cancer radiation only.
“The budget deal freezes that discussion so the current state of affairs remains in effect. It’s a very happy day for us,” Dr. Rechtschaffen said.
The AACU’s Dr. McKenna noted that the budget accelerates the elimination of the Medicare Part D coverage gap, or “donut hole.” The new law requires drug manufacturers to give larger discounts to beneficiaries in the coverage gap, starting in 2019.
Also by Bob Gatty: How would MedPAC replace MIPS?
“All of this is very affirming for all of the work that’s been done and it emphasizes the value and importance of urologists having a presence in Washington,” Dr. Rechtschaffen said. “These victories are worth literally hundreds of millions of dollars for AUA members. It’s a clear indication of why our Washington office is so important.”
Now, it’s time to look ahead, he said, and focus on new initiatives that include prostate cancer testing and prevention, research, and establishing a new Office of Men’s Health.
At the AACU, Dr. McKenna said, “Urologists will push for polices that reduce administrative burdens imposed by public and private payers, as well as sound the alarm on work force shortages that threaten access to care.”
He said President Trump’s proposed budget for 2019 “would be catastrophic: cutting GME funding by $48 billion over 10 years and moving all training programs under the same roof, with no specifics on where funding will come from or how shortage areas will be determined.”
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