HomeWashington Letter2018 ▶ CMS Proposes Changes to Oxygen Under Competitive Bidding
CMS Proposes Changes to Oxygen Under Competitive Bidding

In July, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule on competitive bidding for durable equipment that, if implemented, may have significant implications for Medicare supplemental oxygen.  Many patients and providers are experiencing significant access and service problems with supplemental oxygen likely triggered or exacerbated by reimbursement policies under competitive bidding.

A significant portion of the proposed rule discusses supplemental oxygen and how it has been impacted by competitive bidding.  CMS’s recognition of problems in the supplemental oxygen market is significant and marks the first time the agency has explicitly recognized the problems faced by patients who use supplemental oxygen.

The proposed rule includes several policy options that may bring some relief to oxygen users including:  lead item competitive bidding pricing, increased reimbursement for liquid oxygen, policy to address high flow oxygen systems, and discussion of the service component of supplemental oxygen.

The ATS will closely review the proposed rule and support CMS’s efforts to develop policy to improve the oxygen market.

Last Reviewed: August 3, 2018