September 23, 2020
ASHA’s efforts to stop proposed Medicare Part B cuts to reimbursement for audiology and speech-language pathology services are intensifying as the number of days dwindle before its scheduled implementation in January 2021. The sustained engagement to convince Congress and the Administration to act is being conducted as part of a coalition of which ASHA is playing a leading role, with almost 50 provider groups representing over one million providers.
The coalition’s work has prompted key lawmakers to accelerate their work to find a solution. Representatives Roger Marshall (R-KS) and Bobby Rush (D-IL) are currently leading a letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma asking them to address stakeholder concerns about the cuts. At the same time, Rep. Larry Bucshon (R-IN) said he’s working on legislation with Rep. Ami Bera (D-CA) so that “no provider will have to worry about a large cut to their reimbursement while they work to get back on their feet as they continue battling COVID-19.”
Despite these efforts, Congress is unlikely to intervene before the November elections as legislators struggle with cost and implementation issues and both the House and Senate will be sending members home to campaign next week.
ASHA members can take action to help stop these cuts by sending a letter to your members of Congress.
Visit ASHA’s Medicare payment reductions resources page for additional information and highlights on ASHA’s advocacy to stop these cuts.
For questions on legislative efforts to stop the Medicare cuts, contact Jerry White, ASHA’s director of federal affairs for health care, at firstname.lastname@example.org. For questions on related regulatory efforts, contact Neela Swanson, ASHA’s director of health care policy for coding and reimbursement, at email@example.com.