In a statement released by the National Association for the Advancement of Orthotics and Prosthetics, Peter W. Thomas, JD, general counsel for the NAAOP, discussed the recent advancements for the Medicare Orthotic and Prosthetic Improvement Act.
Senators Olympia Snow (R-Maine), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) introduced the bill to the Senate floor. It is a refined version of the same bill that has already been submitted to the House of Representatives.
If passed, the bill would accomplish three things. First, it would ensure in the 13 licensure states that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will not pay unless the licensure laws for that state are met. Second, it would force CMS to re-evaluate organizations that it has accredited and ensure that those organizations are in compliance with the accreditation and certification laws of the American Board for Certification in Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics and the Board of Certification/Accreditation, International. Lastly, the bill would link provider payment with quality of standards, dividing benefits according to levels of skill.
“This legislation is a real watershed turning point for the O&P field, and it’s something that we can all be proud of,” Thomas said in the statement. “If we pass this legislation, we can truly work to eliminate fraud, abuse and waste and a lot of the things that the federal government is doing to the field though the lens of durable medical equipment. It can finally be implemented in a way that is sensitive to the needs of the O&P community.”
NAAOP is requesting that supporters contact their senators and congressmen to ask them to become cosponsors of the bill. To learn more, visit www.naaop.org.