Regulatory Advocacy

The AAO-HNS has a long history of working closely with regulatory agencies (e.g., Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, U.S. Food and Drug Administration) to maintain our visibility and credibility with national representatives regarding federal regulatory issues.

We believe that advocacy is the key to defining the future of otolaryngology. Federal regulatory advocacy is a top priority of the AAO-HNS.

NEW*  CMS Issues  2015 Proposed Rule for the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule  (7/10/2014)

Last week, CMS released the proposed 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) proposed rule. In its 2015 MPFS Proposed Rule, CMS is proposing a new  more transparent process for establishing PFS payment rates that will allow for more public input prior to finalizing rates.  Under the new process, payment changes will go through notice and comment rulemaking before being adopted beginning for 2016.  In addition, CMS is proposing changes to several quality reporting initiatives, changes to the Physician Compare Website and to continue phasing in of the Value Based Payment Modifier.   Notably, CMS are also proposing to transform all 10- and 90-day global codes to 0-day global codes beginning in CY 2017, proposing to add roughly 80 codes to its list of potentially misvalued codes, and proposing adjustments to malpractice RVUs among other initiatives. For more on the proposed rule, see the CMS Fact Sheet on the Rule

The Academy is currently reviewing the rule and plans to publish a summary online towards the end of July. Members are encouraged to submit individual comments at the Federal Register website.

*NEW* CMS Issues 2015 Proposed Rule that Would Exclude Medicare Coverage of Bone and Air Conduction Hearing Aids(7/10/2014) 

The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently published a rule focusing on the 2015 end-stage renal disease (ESRD) prospective payment system (PPS) and the Durable Medical Equipment Prosthetics Orthotics and Supplies (DMEPOS) fee schedule. Notably, part of the rule specifies that the Medicare reimbursement exclusion for hearing aids will now encompass all types of air conduction and bone conduction hearing aids (external, internal, or implanted).  If finalized, the proposed rule would negate CMS' current coverage of bone anchored hearing aids (BAHA) (also known as osseointegrated implants). The Academy is currently reviewing the rule so please stay tuned for further updates. To view the rule, click here.

The Academy anticipates submitting comments by the deadline but encourages members to individually comment on this proposed rule by the September 2nd deadline by submitting comments online Federal Register website.