ASCLS Lobbies for Lab Issues
An e-mail communication from ASCLS explained more about the new healthcare reform bill recently signed into law by President Obama. We've included it below:
For the laboratory community, the Bill includes an across-the-board clinical laboratory fee schedule cut of 1.75 percent for 5 years, scheduled to begin in 2011. In addition, the Senate bill includes a "productivity adjustment" to the annual CPI update for labs which replaces the 0.5% reduction to updates implemented just last year. The productivity adjustment would reduce the laboratory fee schedule further. The just-passed Senate version of reform provides that the productivity adjustment cannot reduce the CPI update below zero. These provisions are contained in section 3401(l) of the Bill.
At the recent Legislative Symposium with ASCLS, CLMA, AMT and ASCP, representatives of the laboratory industry spent a day on the Hill visiting members of Congress, in both the House and Senate, to lobby for laboratory issues. These organizations would like to see Congress institute the negotiated rule provisions for any proposals which have the potential to impact laboratory reimbursement. The laboratory, like all other segments of health care, is going to have to take some cuts in reimbursement to pay for heathcare reform, but we need to be sure we have input as to how they are applied.
The Government Affairs Committee of ASCLS will be following the next steps closely.
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