Washington, D.C. – The American Clinical Laboratory Association (ACLA) today opened its 19th Annual Meeting entitled “Navigating the Reimbursement Maze: Challenges and Opportunities Facing Laboratories in the 21st Century,” drawing over 100 clinical laboratory professionals from across the country and featuring health policy experts that will address regulatory policy and funding challenges impacting clinical laboratories.
“As an industry, clinical labs provide the most critical information needed for 70% of physician decisions and aid early diagnosis and treatment of chronic diseases that, when caught early, prevent years of increasing cost to the healthcare system. Our industry is also poised at the forefront of scientific advances in personalized medicine,” said Mertz. “Yet, clinical laboratories across the nation continue to be subjected to repeated cuts in Medicare reimbursement and faces mounting policy challenges that could threaten patient access to the best treatments available. We look forward to hearing from policy experts familiar with the Medicare reimbursement maze and coming together as an industry to advance sound policy alternatives.”
ACLA’s conference agenda begins with a keynote address by Charlie Cook, editor and publisher of The Cook Political Report, on the political outlook for 2014 and beyond. Featured speakers to follow include Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Director of Hospital and Ambulatory Policy Group, Marc Harstein; former CMS Administrator and senior counsel to Alston & Bird L.L.P, Thomas Scully; and senior congressional staff from key health care committees of jurisdiction: Senate Finance, House Energy and Commerce and House Ways and Means.
In addition to focusing on current and prospective policy changes in Medicare, conference topics will also explore regulatory oversight of laboratory developed tests (LDTs), the future of molecular diagnostic reimbursement, and a comparative analysis of commercial verses Medicare pricing of clinical lab tests.
“In many ways, the intense challenges we face on reimbursement have brought the lab industry together,” noted Mertz is his opening address. “ACLA leadership is a product of engaged members who continue to work hard with our team in Washington to ensure logical legislative and regulatory policy that protects clinical lab innovation and services that improve the delivery of healthcare.”
Click here for a full list of the speakers and panelists at the event.