ACLA Statement on Medicare Reimbursement Rate For Serologic Testing

WASHINGTON, D.C.Following the release by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) of a reimbursement rate of $42.13 for the most commonly-performed COVID-19 serologic tests, ACLA President Julie Khani released the following statement:

“We applaud CMS’ release of a Medicare reimbursement rate that will encourage a broad cross section of laboratories to rapidly scale up capacity for accurate and reliable serologic testing for SARS-CoV-2.

Serologic testing is one of many valuable tools used to inform broader prevention, containment and mitigation strategies in our fight against COVID-19.  To meet unprecedented demand, we must encourage every laboratory, including commercial, public, academic and hospital labs with the necessary expertise, to expand testing capacity. Today’s decision is an important step forward to achieve that goal.

This announcement also reflects one of the important lessons learned from the roll out of COVID-19 molecular tests. We know that the lack of sufficient reimbursement for tests performed was a barrier to entry for many laboratories, and we have seen the positive outcomes from increasing the Medicare reimbursement rate for the molecular test. Laboratories across the country are bringing on additional testing platforms and increasing testing for high-risk populations, such as nursing home residents.

To help give public health officials the data points they need to contain this virus, the federal government must dedicate financial resources to ensure that accurate and reliable COVID-19 testing is widely available when and where it is needed. As congressional leaders consider additional legislative packages to address this unprecedented public health crisis, robust federal funding is still needed to ensure that all patients – regardless of insurance status – have access to accurate and reliable serologic and molecular tests.”

To read ACLA’s recent white paper, Supporting a Comprehensive, Nationwide Response to COVID-19: The Role of Serologic Testing, click here.

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ACLA is a not-for-profit association representing the nation’s leading clinical and anatomic pathology laboratories, including national, regional, specialty, hospital, ESRD and nursing home laboratories. The clinical laboratory industry employs nearly 295,000 people directly, and generates over 117,000 additional jobs in supplier industries. Clinical laboratories are at the forefront of personalized medicine, driving diagnostic innovation and contributing more than $106 billion to the nation’s economy.

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