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New Program for Medicare Beneficiaries Will Mean Major Changes Effective January 1, 2011 - The Carolinas
Date:1/3/2011

LUBBOCK, Texas, Jan. 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --: The MED Group, a Managed Health Care Associates, Inc. (MHA) Company, announces the creation of www.medicaresuppliersnetwork.com. The website was created to help answer questions for Medicare beneficiaries and referral sources, such as physician offices, about competitive bidding and how patients can receive their medical equipment under this new program.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will be implementing a new program January 1, 2011 that will make drastic changes to how Medicare beneficiaries receive their medical equipment. Presently, Medicare beneficiaries and referral sources are allowed to choose a medical equipment supplier of their choice. The new program called "competitive bidding" will reduce and limit the number of medical equipment companies that can provide equipment to traditional Medicare beneficiaries. This program does not affect any patients who are on a Medicare Advantage Plan or traditional insurance. CMS was mandated by Congress to create this program to help control Medicare costs and lower out of pocket expenses for seniors.

In the Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord area approximately 85-90% of medical equipment companies will be excluded from providing equipment to traditional Medicare beneficiaries. This program is limited to all or part of the nine counties surrounding the Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord area and is based on the zip code of the patient. The competitive bidding area includes counties in South Carolina and North Carolina. The area includes all or part of the following counties- Cabarrus, Mecklenburg, Gaston, York, Union, Anson, Rowan, Lincoln, and Chester. There is an estimated 160,000 Medicare beneficiaries living within the Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord competitive bidding area.

Any traditional Medicare beneficiary living in the nine counties (according to their zip code) will be required to us
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SOURCE The MED Group
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