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Mississippi Association of Medical Equipment Suppliers

 

Title: Round 2 of Competitive Bidding Delayed
Posted on: 04/07/2011
Description:
Round 2 of Competitive Bidding Delayed
BALTIMORE—According to a new timeline, Round 2 of competitive bidding will be delayed by at least six months.

Under a revised schedule presented today at a meeting of the Program Advisory and Oversight Committee, the implementation of Round 2 will not begin until the summer of 2013.

CMS officials had said the bid window for the next round, which will add 91 cities to the DMEPOS bidding program, would open at some point between this spring and summer. Now that won’t happen until December at the earliest.

Outlined by CMS’ Joel Kaiser, deputy director of DMEPOS policy, following is the new timeline for Round 2:

Summer 2011
- Announcement of Round 2 product categories
- Begin pre-registration education for potential bidders

Fall 2011
- Announcement of bidding schedule and schedule of education events
- Begin bidder registration
- Begin bidder education

Winter 2012 (December 2011 - January/February 2012)
- Registration ends
- Open bidding
- Covered document review process begins

Spring 2012
- Bidding closes
- Notify supplier of missing financial documents
- Begin bid evaluation

Fall 2012
- Bid evaluation ends
- Announcement of single payment amounts
- Begin contracting process

Spring 2013
- Contract suppliers announced
- Begin contract supplier education
- Start beneficiary, referral agent and general supplier education program

Summer 2013
- Implementation of Round 2 and national mail order program contract and prices

In a press release issued today, Reps. Jason Altmire, D-Pa., and Glenn “GT” Thompson, R-Pa., said they welcomed CMS’ decision to delay the originally scheduled Round 2 start date.

But delaying the program “only kicks the can to a future date,” Thompson said.

The two Pennsylvania congressmen recently introduced H.R. 1041, the Fairness in Medicare Bidding Act, to repeal the competitive bidding program. At latest count, the bill has picked up more than 60 cosponsors in the House.

“CMS’s decision to delay round two of the competitive bidding program shows that even it acknowledges that this program is seriously flawed,” Altmire said. “The truth is that no matter how CMS tries to tweak its competitive bidding program, it will continue to be a fundamentally bad deal for our nation’s seniors and small businesses.”

While the delay is an indication that H.R. 1041 is gaining momentum, Thompson said, “we must continue efforts to educate policymakers here in Washington about the disastrous effects this program will have on our communities and Medicare beneficiaries.”

Read the Altmire-Thompson press release.

For additional details on the PAOC meeting, check future issues of HomeCare Monday.


   
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