Nurse Practitioners and Durable Medical Equipment Rules (that are crazy)
[Sent on behalf of the ANA Department of Government Affairs]
Congressman Jim McDermott (D-WA), the Ranking Member on the Ways & Means Committee, introduced legislation to eliminate the physician signature for ordering durable medical equipment (DME). H.R. 3833 would essentially remedy the current DME face-to-face problem. H.R. 3833 would allow nurse practitioners (NP), clinical nurse specialists (CNS), and physician assistants (PA) to document that the face-to-face encounter required by the ACA has occurred.
Currently, the Affordable Care Act requires that if an NP, CNS, or PA conducted the face-to-face encounter, that a physician counter sign the DME encounter form. APRNs do not object to the requirement for a face-to-face encounter with the patient for whom they order DME, but it is an unreasonable and costly administrative burden to require that a physician sign off on these DME orders. This additional requirement increases the cost of patient care and leads to unnecessary delays in Medicare patients obtaining the medical equipment they need.
ANA's Government Affairs department will send an action alert to the ANA membership to ask them to reach out to their Member of Congress to encourage them to sign onto the bill. They will also request support for the bill to be included in the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) repeal that needs to be adopted by Congress in March.