AAH reports numerous updates on coronavirus and HME

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

WASHINGTON – CMS recently updated its COVID-19 FAQ to include coverage for home oxygen for patients diagnosed with the disease.

The agency is currently reviewing the NCDs and LCDs to determine if there are other regulatory barriers that can be removed during this emergency and will provide an update soon, AAHomecare reports.

Other developments, according to the association:

  • Performant Recovery, the DMEPOS RAC, is following CMS’s COVID-19 emergency guidance and holding off on new audits. Starting March 18, the RAC will not be sending any new ADR letters for 30 days. Performant will also work with providers on previous requests, granting them extensions if they’re having difficulties gathering/submitting documentation. The RAC suggests contacting the customer service line at 866-201-0580.
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is allowing vent manufacturers to add product lines or alternative sites to increase production, as well as easing the review process for modifications. The agency is also allowing hospitals to use vents that were intended to be used in other environments and is providing recommendations on other devices that can be used in the place of vents, such as CPAP devices. Finally, the FDA is extending the shelf life of vents to increase capacity.
  • The Trump Administration has invoked the Defense Production Act, which could be leveraged to require vent manufacturers to prioritize government contracts; require manufacturers to make more face masks and other goods, offering loans/promises to buy; and establish a pool of industry execs from leading companies who could be called into government service in the interest of national defense.

AAHomecare has also developed a COVID-19 Resources Page as a home for government and industry resources/updates to help HME providers stay informed.