Navigation Links
Proposed Medicare Changes Will Increase Costs to Government, Decrease Options for Patients
Date:10/1/2009

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Oct. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Heart patients and cardiologists across the country are reaching out to legislators desperately asking that healthcare access be preserved as discussions about healthcare reform continue.

Changes proposed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) - scheduled to become law January 1, 2010 - will dramatically impact the accessibility of life-saving cardiology testing and services currently available in cardiology practices. If enacted, cardiologists will be unable to continue offering necessary diagnostic tests in their offices, such as cardiac catheterization and peripheral vascular, forcing patients to seek outpatient care at hospital facilities.

Invasive outpatient cardiology services offered in non-hospital settings were first introduced more than 30 years ago. Since that time, the cardiology community has facilitated measurable advances in cardiovascular technology and outcomes. As access to cutting-edge diagnostic and therapeutic services in non-hospital clinical settings (such as cardiology practices) has increased, patient mortality rates have consistently decreased. The availability of these services outside of the hospital environment saves Medicare tens of millions of dollars each year, and results in much lower out-of-pocket costs for patients as well.

In a sweeping measure that would reverse a four-decade trend of increasing access to cost-effective, non-hospital care, the CMS-proposed changes will reduce reimbursement for select cardiac services offered outside of a hospital-owned facility by as much as 60 percent. The draconian cuts will likely make it impossible for cardiology practices to continue providing these services to Medicare patients.

In a measure that seems counter-productive to healthcare reform, the proposed changes will greatly increase hard costs to Medicare, as the reimbursement rate to hospitals for the same services provided in cardiology practices is much, much greater. If all outpatient catheterization cases currently provided in physician offices in the course of a year are driven into hospitals, costs to the Medicare program in 2010 will increase by at least $86 million. Medicare patients will personally experience the increase: the out-of-pocket cost for a catheterization performed in an outpatient hospital setting is $583.50 more than when the same procedure is performed in a cardiology practice.

"Physicians across the country are extremely concerned that a lack of timely access to cardiologists and office-based services will reverse the historic improvements in cardiac patient outcomes that have been achieved in recent years," explained Steve Blades, president of Cardiovascular Outpatient Center Alliance (COCA), a non-profit organization representing more than 60 outpatient cardiac catheterization centers across the nation. "Decreased access and delay in treatment, compounded by an influx of patients to hospital-based cardiac centers, is expected to lead to an increase in cardiac admissions to hospitals for needs that should have been addressed in an outpatient environment."

Concern in the medical community - among both physicians and patients - has led thousands to reach out to elected officials in an effort to stop the enactment of the CMS proposal.

"These proposed changes represent a lose / lose proposition in healthcare at a time when our country desperately needs more win / win options on the table," said U.S. Congressman Parker Griffith (D-AL). "It is completely illogical to take a measure that will increase patient costs, increase government costs and decrease access to care - which is why so many are speaking up."

COCA, along with the American College of Cardiology and the Cardiology Advocacy Alliance, encourages physicians, patients and concerned citizens to learn more about the proposal and contact their elected officials. Additional information can be found at www.guardingheartsalliance.org.

COCA (www.cocaheart.org) is a non-profit organization representing more than 60 U.S. cardiology practices and organizations and 1,000 cardiologists who own and operate outpatient cardiac catheterization facilities. The group and its members are dedicated to advancing the quality and accessibility of outpatient cardiac catheterization services through education, research and legislative advocacy.

SOURCE COCA


'/>"/>
SOURCE COCA
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Mylan Commences Tender Offers and Consent Solicitations for Its 5.750% Senior Notes Due 2010 and 6.375% Senior Notes Due 2015 in Connection With Its Proposed Acquisition of Mercks Generic Pharmaceutical Business
2. Physician Skin Care Specialist Says Proposed New Rules for Sunscreen Products Will Better Protect the Public
3. Kyphon Announces Special Meeting Date to Vote on Proposed Medtronic Merger
4. Hologic Sets Special Meeting of Stockholders to Vote on Proposed Merger with Cytyc Corporation
5. Microtek Medical Receives Early Termination of Hart-Scott-Rodino Act Waiting Period for Its Proposed Acquisition by Ecolab
6. Screening Proposed for Childhood Cholesterol Levels
7. More than 10,000 Medicare Patients in Montana Could Be Hit by Proposed Cuts to Home Oxygen Therapy; Access to Power Wheelchairs Would Also Decrease
8. Pelosi Statement on Proposed Entitlement Task Force
9. Paramount Acquisition Corp. Announces Record Date of October 1, 2007 for Proposed Acquisition of Chem Rx
10. Paramount Acquisition Corp. Files Amendment to Preliminary Proxy Statement for Proposed Acquisition of Chem Rx
11. AARP Calls on State Regulators to Reject Proposed Settlement of TXU Buyout
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/20/2017)... ... June 20, 2017 , ... Uniform Advantage (UA), a multi-channel retailer ... designed to create tailored looks and athleisure-inspired outfits. UA Flex fabric is breathable, wrinkle ... twill. , With trendy looks hitting the medical community, UA Flex is for the ...
(Date:6/20/2017)... ... 20, 2017 , ... Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection recently gave ... boutique ship, S.S. Joie de Vivre . What really sets this ship apart ... River and designed small enough to dock directly in Paris. With The Cruise Web’s ...
(Date:6/20/2017)... ... 20, 2017 , ... Bellus Medical, a leader in medical ... of Sales, a critical role to help spearhead business development, strategic sales plans ... McKenna is a seasoned business leader, joining Bellus Medical with more than 20 ...
(Date:6/19/2017)... ... June 19, 2017 , ... Intrinsic Clinical ... the international exchange of actionable insights to improve health globally through the advancement ... make clinical trial management faster, easier, and less painful. Attendees can visit Intrinsic’s ...
(Date:6/19/2017)... ... June 19, 2017 , ... Many women are confused ... endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate symptoms and ... help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The specialists at ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/8/2017)... June 8, 2017   Responding to Heath Ledger,s ... the death of singer Chris Cornell in May, ... International offers a free online psychiatric drug ... and families about psychotropic drug risks. The ... died from an accidental overdose, has called for tighter rules ...
(Date:6/7/2017)... 7, 2017 Endo International plc (NASDAQ: ... the Hon. Joseph R. Goodwin , U.S. District ... West Virginia , entered a case management order ... System Products Liability Litigation (the "MDL") that includes a ... provide expert disclosures on specific causation within one hundred ...
(Date:6/7/2017)... , June 6, 2017  Diplomat Specialty Infusion Group, a ... compounding environment to its Iowa location. ... Urbandale now features an ISO 7 cleanroom—the standard needed ... environment with a low level of pollutants. ... IV nutrition consumers and better serve our Iowa ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: