The House Ways and Means recently approved three pieces of bipartisan legislation geared toward improving the Medicare program, a committee release said.
One of the measures, the Stark Administrative Simplification Act of 2017 (HR 3726), adds to a legislation passed in July dealing with Medicare physician self-referral laws. The measure allows another way to resolve minor violations, the release said.
“These modernizations will alleviate the backlog of burdensome disclosures and allow CMS to focus on the bad actors in our medical system … hard-fought reforms to this process will allow the health care providers in our communities to get back to what they do best – treating and healing our constituents,” Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-TX), who introduced the measure with Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI), said in the release.
A second measure, Increasing Telehealth Access in Medicare (ITAM) (HR. 3727) was introduced by Reps. Diane Black (R-TN) and Mike Thompson (D-CA) and enables telehealth services to be a basic benefit for Medicare Advantage recipients instead of a supplemental service, the release said.
The Comprehensive Operations, Sustainability, and Transport Act of 2017 (HR 3729), introduced by Reps. Devin Nunes (R-CA) and Terri Sewell (D-AL), extends the add-on payment for Medicare beneficiaries' ambulance transport, the release said.
“I’ve learned that for too many of my constituents, their first and most common exposure to the health care industry is in an ambulance," Sewell said in the release. "As we continue to work towards meaningful long-term reform, we must provide certainty to the ambulance industry and other health care industries with extenders.”