INFOLINK: Association News
Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders
In its recent newsletter, the Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders reported on its ongoing advocacy initiatives to promote and protect access to wound care products and technologies for wound patients and for the clinicians who treat them. Among its areas of focus is a new proposed legislation introduced in Congress with bipartisan support that the Alliance believes may provide a legislative fix for many of the issues that it and its members have faced with the Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) local coverage determinations (LCDs). The proposed Senate legislation, “Local Coverage Determination Clarification Act of 2017” (S.794), would improve transparency and accountability when MACs set LCD policies for physician services provided to Medicare beneficiaries. The Alliance will be voicing its support to the bill’s cosponsors.
Members of the Alliance also have been addressing wound care draft LCDs from Novitas and First Coast Service Option Solutions (FCSO) that they view as equally problematic. The Alliance provided oral testimony at Novitas and FCSO public meetings and submitted comprehensive written comments emphasizing concerns across a range of issues in the 2 LCDs, including an overall lack of evidence to support proposed changes, elimination of coverage of disposable negative-pressure wound therapy (NPWT), and “arbitrary” utilization parameters for both NPWT and debridement services. Among its comments to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services contractors on these issues, the Alliance stated, “Changes in the draft LCD[s] seem to have no foundation in medical evidence or clinical practice guidelines. The Alliance has concerns regarding the basis for which utilization parameters were established in that they do not adhere to current clinical practice guidelines and appear to be arbitrary…. The Alliance is concerned about the lack of coverage of disposable NPWT and the lack of transparency by which the noncoverage decision was made. We request that the analysis and clinical evidence used as the basis for the decision be provided.”
This is a summary of the Alliance’s recent activities. The Alliance aims to unite wound care experts to advocate on public policy issues that may create barriers to patients’ access to treatments or care. More details on Alliance activities are available at http://bit.ly/2rlWje5.