WASHINGTON, DC – The House of Representatives today passed H.R. 3178, the Medicare Part B Improvement Act of 2017, by voice vote.
H.R. 3178 makes several improvements to the Medicare program, primarily to the delivery of home dialysis services and infusion therapy. Specifically, under the 21st Century Cures Act (Cures), the way Medicare reimburses for the acquisition of home infusion drugs changed, beginning this year. Cures also created a new benefit to reimburse for the needed education services associated with educating Medicare beneficiaries on home infusion services, beginning in 2021.
As passed today, H.R. 3178 creates a temporary payment to bridge these two important policies to ensure beneficiaries have access to home infusion so these very vulnerable beneficiaries do not need to travel while also ensuring Medicare is reimbursing at a proper level for the benefit of beneficiaries and taxpayers.
“This is another bipartisan win for patients, and passage of this bill will address potential issues that may have arisen in the four-year gap between needed payment reform and this new educational benefit,” said Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR). “I have worked all year with my friend and colleague, Chairman Brady, on this bipartisan legislation to ensure this important benefit remains available to beneficiaries while also making several additional improvements to the Medicare program. I thank Chairman Brady for his collaboration and work on this critical bill, and ensuring we move it forward for patients.”