The Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) along with coalition partners the Medical Imaging Technology Alliance (MITA) and the Council on Radionuclides and Radiopharmaceuticals (CORAR) have renewed their efforts to continue promoting H.R. 3772, the Medicare Diagnostic Radiopharmaceutical Payment Equity Act of 2019.
This act would extend equitable reimbursement for approved PET agents and thereby stimulate development of new diagnostic radiopharmaceuticals. According to SNMMI, two important radiopharmaceuticals—68Ga-DOTATATE and 18F-fluciclovine—have been bundled this year, resulting in inequitable reimbursement compared to the past 3 years. A third radiopharmaceutical, 18F-florbetapir, is scheduled to be bundled later in 2020.
The coalition partners are planning virtual “fly-ins.” Participants are organized into teams—each including perspectives from industry, providers, and patients—who virtually visited specific congressional offices.
In all, the teams aim to participate in more than 50 meetings to educating congressional representatives and staff about the importance of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging. The enormous financial burden COVID-19 has had on hospitals systems will also be discussed. Lack of revenue-producing elective procedures, coupled with the demands of COVID-19, will likely mean hospitals will be reluctant to support innovative nuclear medicine services because of inadequate reimbursement.
SNMMI asks that its members send letters of support for H.R. 3772 to their own members of Congress. For more information on H.R. 3772, visit SNMMI.
FLUORODOPA F 18 Injection was Approved by FDA on 10-10-2019. CMS has not yet approved the Medicare payment yet for this FDA approved PET drug. I am wondering why this PET drug was not included along with the other two for reimbursement. In the case of FDOPA F 18 Injection, it is not going to increase the financial burden for CMS, since the same patient population will be shared between DATSCAN and FDOPA. FDOPA F 18 is an innovative imaging agent for Parkinson’s disease. I hope SNMMI will include FDOPA F 18 also when they promote the HR 3772.