Senators Push CMS to Rethink Medicare Part B Payment Proposal
Friday, April 29, 2016
Both Democrats and Republicans in the Senate have added their voices to the rising chorus of concern about the Obama administration's proposal to test new payment models for Medicare Part B.
The proposal, unveiled in March by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, aims to design incentives for patients and physicians to select lower-cost, high-performing drugs that are administered at medical facilities. But it has drawn fire from pharmaceutical manufacturers and provider groups, which argue the proposal puts cost concerns ahead of access to life-saving treatments.
Now, politicians have jumped into the fray.
In a letter sent this week to CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt, Republican members of the Senate Finance Committee called for the agency to withdraw its Part B proposal, writing that "it would severely disrupt care" for some of the most vulnerable Medicare beneficiaries.
Senate Democrats didn't go as far as advocating for CMS to scrap its proposal--they instead outlined concerns they say they've heard from patients, providers and other stakeholders.