Friday, May 24, 2024

VIEW NAAOP VIDEO and UPDATE on “Major Policy Priorities Confront O&P”

NAAOP

Please view our video webcast and update:

Major public policies that impact orthotics and prosthetics were in play
during the month of March including the following:

1. ACA Repeal and Replace Falters: House Republicans were unable to bridge
differences between their conservative and moderate factions on the ACA
repeal and replace legislation known as the American Health Care Act (AHCA).
All Democrats opposed the bill. This resulted in the bill being pulled from
the House floor before a vote was taken. The bill is indefinitely on hold
and the Senate is not likely to take up health reform any time soon.
NAAOP’s major concern with the AHCA centered on preservation of access to
orthotic and prosthetic care. The bill would have repealed the essential
health benefits (EHB) package for Medicaid expansion populations, which
currently includes coverage of “rehabilitative and habilitative services and
devices.” This statutory language, coupled with the regulations that
interpret the statute, was instrumental in securing coverage of O&P care
across the country in both Medicaid expansion states and ACA individual
insurance plans. As negotiations on the AHCA continued before its ultimate
demise, there were tentative agreements to extend the repeal of the EHB from
Medicaid expansion states to private plans as well. But with the bill’s
failure, EHB dodged a bullet. Ultimately, health reform is not over. The
threat to O&P coverage will continue, especially through the regulatory
process. But for the time being, the effort to repeal and replace the
Affordable Care Act is in disarray.

2. BIPA Section 427 Proposed Rule: Over 5,000 individuals and organizations
commented on the proposed regulations interpreting Section 427 of the
Benefits Improvement and Protection Act (BIPA), which were due on March
13th. This regulation would implement the statutory provision enacted in
the year 2000 that would limit Medicare payment for custom orthotics and
prosthetics only to qualified practitioners and suppliers. Much of the
proposed rule defined exactly which health care professionals will be
considered qualified and which will not. NAAOP will be working in concert
with the O&P Alliance to continue to engage CMS to publish a final
regulation at the earliest possible time. However, with the Trump
Administration’s regulatory relief initiative, we have a stiff headwind in
our efforts to secure a final rule.

3. AHRQ Issues Revised Protocol for Lower Limb Prosthetic Evidence Base: A
contractor of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) recently
released a revised “protocol” addressing the evidence base for lower limb
prostheses. The revised protocol ominously entitled, “Error Rate Reduction
for Lower Limb Prostheses,” seeks information from researchers on evidence
that answers a series of research questions. The revised protocol adopted
many comments drafted by the O&P Alliance, in which NAAOP participated.
Therefore, far more studies will be considered relevant under the new study
protocol. More information will be distributed when it becomes available.

Please visit our website at: www.naaop.org

NAAOP

1501 M Street, NW

7th Floor

Washington, DC 20005-1700

e-mail: [email protected]

(800) 622-6740

(202) 624-0064 Phone

(202) 785-1756 Fax

www.naaop.org

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