The Medicare durable medical equipment (DME), prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies (DMEPOS) competitive bidding program is scheduled to take effect January 1, 2011 in nine geographic regions. CMS had intended to announce the names of the contract suppliers last month, but they still have not been released (although the announcement could be made at any time). CMS has attributed the delay in naming the contract suppliers to “the past history of fraud in the DME arena and new tools to detect it,” but the agency still believes “there will be more than enough qualified suppliers in all of the 9 sites to assure beneficiary access to equipment and supplies.” CMS also states its intention to conduct “aggressive education and outreach activities for our beneficiaries and other stakeholders.” To that end, CMS held an educational session for Ohio suppliers on October 27 and another session is scheduled for November 3. CMS also plans a national educational call on November 8 geared towards non-contract suppliers. Additional educational resources also have been released by CMS and the Competitive Bidding Implementation Contractor (CBIC), including a Contract Supplier Change of Information Form, Supplier Marketing Guidelines, information on licensure for contract suppliers and subcontracting, and fact sheets on contract supplier obligations, traveling beneficiaries, physicians and other practitioners who are enrolled Medicare DMEPOS suppliers, and hospitals that are not contract suppliers.
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DMEPOS competitive bidding update
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Senior Patent Counsel
Royal DSM NV