WASHINGTON – The Alliance for Site Neutral Payment Reform – a coalition of patient advocates, providers, payers, and employers – today applauded the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the Lower Costs, More Transparency Act (HR 5378) in a strong bipartisan vote. Among other provisions, Section 203 of the legislation would require site neutral payments for drug administration in off-campus HOPDs.
In a recent letter to House leadership, the Alliance expressed its strong support for Section 203, citing the provision’s significant cost savings to both patients and taxpayers. Under current Medicare rates, drug administration in the hospital outpatient department setting (HOPD) is reimbursed at two to three times the rate of the same services provided in the physician office setting.
These payment disparities have not only generated higher out-of-pocket costs for patients and health care spending but have also provided an incentive for hospital systems to acquire independent practices. As a result, physicians are being driven out of private practice – a trend that, according to new reports, has a negative impact on patient care quality and access.
The Alliance for Site Neutral Payment Reform urges the Senate to take up this important policy.