Health Information Management

Understand the Medicare, Medicaid and SCHIP Extension Act of 2007

APCs Insider, December 28, 2007

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QUESTION: I've heard that President Bush plans to sign legislation to extend the current treatment of technical component (TC) pathology changes by six months, as well as extend the current payment methods for brachytherapy and therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals. Is this true?

ANSWER: Yes. According to the proposed Medicare, Medicaid and SCHIP Extension Act of 2007 released by the Senate Finance Committee, there will be an "extension of treatment of certain physician pathology services. Extends for six months the provision that allows independent laboratories to continue to bill Medicare directly for the technical component of certain physician pathology services provided to hospitals as authorized by the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 through June 30, 2008."

There will also be an "extension of payment rule for brachytherapy; extension to therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals. [The legislation] extends the current 'charges to cost' methodology, which provides a separate payment for brachytherapy services through June 30, 2008. [The legislation] includes therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals in this provision."

To read the full bill, click here.

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