Bloomberg Law (10/13, Pugh, Subscription Publication) reports CMS “has a plan to ensure full payment for and speedy access to new COVID-19 vaccines and treatments for Medicare beneficiaries, agency Administrator Seema Verma said Tuesday at a virtual conference.” Because, “it can take one to three years to work out payment issues for vaccines and other treatments due to agency’s ‘very deliberative processes’...the agency is working on a rule to address this ‘because we want to make sure that our payment policies aren’t standing in the way of beneficiaries having access to the latest treatments,’ Verma said in an interview with former CMS Administrator Mark McClellan during the Health Care Payment Learning and Action Network Virtual Summit.” Verma explained that “CMS is working to ensure that ‘as FDA is giving approvals for new medications, that we are paying for these innovative treatments appropriately.’”
MedCity News (10/13, Reuter) also reports.
CMS Will Ensure COVID-19 Vaccine Is Available To Seniors At No Cost After Vaccine Approval, Verma Says.
Healthcare Finance News (10/13, Hackett) reports CMS “will make sure that a COVID-19 vaccine will be made available to seniors at no cost once a vaccine is approved, CMS Administrator Seema Verma said during today’s HLTH 2020 virtual conference.” Although “it is important that seniors...don’t have any barriers to getting the vaccine, CMS is working to guarantee a free vaccine for Medicaid and private insurance members as well, Verma said.” She explained, “We also just want to make sure that all of our rules make it very clear to insurers that we want to make sure that every American can have access to these vaccines. ... The government’s going to pay for the costs of the vaccines, so we want to make sure insurance companies and all the programs across the country ensure that people have timely access and that cost is not a barrier.”