Chronic Diseases and Conditions
Nearly one in five Medicare beneficiaries has diabetes and these patients face major challenges in managing their health. The high diabetes rate among beneficiaries also means that the Medicare program itself is highly vulnerable to the high costs of uncontrolled diabetes. As a result, great care must be taken when implementing any new cost containment strategy that has the potential to disrupt access to preventive health care. This is particularly in the case of the Medicare Competitive Acquisition Program for Durable Medical Equipment and Supplies (DMEPOS), because of its potential impact on access to products needed for a basic preventive service, diabetes testing supplies. Yet despite these concerns over both beneficiary health and program costs, the DMEPOS program, as it is now being implemented, lacks the types of basic patient safeguards considered standard in competitive bidding arrangements such as Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D.
Rosenbaum, S., Dor, A., Finnegan, B., & Jones, E. (2008). Medicare competitive acquisition: Implications for persons with diabetes. Washington, D.C.: Department of Health Policy, School of Public Health and Health Services, The George Washington University.