Medicare is phasing in a new Competitive Bidding Program in some areas of the country. This program changes the amount Medicare pays suppliers for certain durable medical equipment (DME), prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies, and changes who can supply these items. As of July 2013, this program will be in 99 areas of the country.
Medicare also has a new National Mail-Order Program for diabetic testing supplies, which applies no matter where you live.
Important: The program doesn't affect which doctors you can use.
The Competitive Bidding Program applies to Original Medicare only. If you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO), your plan will let you know if your supplier is changing. If you’re not sure, contact your plan.
What's the DME Competitive Bidding Program?
The Competitive Bidding Program replaces the outdated prices Medicare has been paying with lower, more accurate prices. Under this program, suppliers submit bids to provide certain medical equipment and supplies at a lower price than what Medicare now pays for these items. Medicare uses these bids to set the amount it will pay for those equipment and supplies under the competitive bidding program. Qualified, accredited suppliers with winning bids are chosen as Medicare-contract suppliers.
- Helps you and Medicare save money
- Ensures that you have access to quality medical equipment, supplies, and services from suppliers you can trust
- Helps limit fraud and abuse in the Medicare Program
More about the DME Competitive Bidding Program
- What areas of the country are included?
- What kinds of items and supplies are included?
- Where can I get items and supplies?
- Where can I get items and supplies when I travel?
- How does Medicare's coverage of items and supplies work with other insurance?
- How can I find a Medicare-contract supplier in my area?