shutterstock 104502053Late last month Rep Tom Price, MD, (R-Ga) and Rep John Larson (D-Conn), senior members of the House Ways and Means Committee, introduced a bill that will prevent CMS from implementing the Round 2 bidding program and replace it with a market pricing program.

HR 1717, the Medicare DMEPOS Market Pricing Program Act of 2013, will stop the bidding program, forcing CMS to adopt a market-based approach to determine prices for home medical equipment that is prescribed by doctors for Medicare patients rather than relying on administrative price setting.

Home care advocates say that the bill is a major victory for Medicare patients. “The market-based approach advocated by Rep Price is supported by numerous patient advocacy groups, as well as by the homecare industry,” says Joel D. Marx, chairman of Medical Service Company in Cleveland, Ohio, and on the American Association for Homecare board of directors. “It guarantees that patients will continue to have full access to home medical equipment services in a timely, competitive manner while assuring Medicare and taxpayers of the savings that are greatly needed in this era of unbalanced government budgets.”