Medicare Announces Substantial Savings for Medical Equipment Included in Bidding Program

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WASHINGTON—The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced new, lower Medicare prices that will go into effect this July in a major expansion of the Medicare Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS) Competitive Bidding Program. The CMS Office of the Actuary estimates that the program will save the Medicare Part B Trust Fund $25.7 billion and beneficiaries $17.1 billion between 2013 and 2022. Medicare beneficiaries in 91 major metropolitan areas will save an average of 45 percent for certain DMEPOS items scheduled to begin on July 1, 2013.

Medicare beneficiaries across the country will save an average of 72 percent on diabetic testing supplies under a national mail-order program starting at the same time. A full list of the new prices is available at www.dmecompetitivebid.com.

“This program has already saved millions for taxpayers and beneficiaries while maintaining access to care,” said CMS Acting Administrator Marilyn Tavenner. “We look forward to building on this success by serving more beneficiaries, increasing savings and helping to ensure the long-term sustainability of Medicare.”

Medicare’s competitive bidding program replaces its existing fee schedule amounts in selected areas with prices based on suppliers’ bids, saving money for taxpayers and beneficiaries, while preserving access to quality products from accredited suppliers. Using market-based prices set through competition will help ensure the long-term sustainability of the Medicare program. Small businesses represent over half of the winning suppliers in these 91 metropolitan areas.

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