CMS gets pushback on PET fee cuts

By AuntMinnie.com staff writers

October 2, 2019 -- Imaging organizations opposing the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' (CMS) proposed payment reductions related to myocardial PET equipment and services have received support from 43 members of Congress.

The congressional members have written a letter to CMS in response to its decision to assume a 90% utilization rate for PET cameras and subsequently reduce Medicare fee-for-service reimbursement for multiple PET myocardial perfusion services by approximately 72% next year.

"We are concerned these reductions will drive cardiac PET services out of physician offices, where the majority of cardiac PET is provided, and into hospitals which could limit patient access to this important imaging modality, particularly in rural and underserved areas, and increase beneficiary and healthcare system costs," they wrote.

"Physician practices depend on payment predictability and stability; immediate reductions of this scale could be disruptive," they asserted. "We urge [CMS] to delay these cuts and work with stakeholders to improve the accuracy of equipment inputs when calculating PET reimbursement, thereby mitigating cuts of the proposed magnitude."

The objecting organizations include the following:

  • American College of Cardiology (ACC)
  • American College of Nuclear Medicine (ACNM)
  • American Society of Nuclear Cardiology (ASNC)
  • Cardiology Advocacy Alliance (CAA)
  • Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI)


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