Over 30 organizations, including the AHA, urged Congress to swiftly pass the Saving Access to Laboratory Services Act (S. 1000/H.R. 2377), bipartisan legislation that would update Medicare’s payment system for laboratory services to make it predictable and sustainable. The Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 reformed the Medicare Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule to a single national fee schedule based on private market data from laboratories that service Medicare beneficiaries, but significant under sampling led to nearly $4 billion in cuts to hospital, physician and other labs providing commonly ordered tests for Medicare beneficiaries. Without a solution to this problem, labs face another round of cuts of up to 15% in January.

“It is essential that Congress protect patients by acting this year to fix the Medicare payment model for clinical diagnostic tests,” the organizations said in a letter to congressional leaders.

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