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News and Press: Policy News

Senators Introduce Bill to Streamline Patient Access to Medical Devices

Wednesday, July 29, 2015   (0 Comments)
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Bipartisan Legislation Will Increase Patient Options, Remove Red Tape 

U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), John Thune (R-S.D.), and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) introduced legislation to increase patient access to medical devices by removing government red tape. The Accelerating Innovation in Medicine (AIM) Act, authored by Portman and Heinrich, will streamline access to medical devices by giving patients the option to self-pay rather than going through the time-consuming Medicare coverage process. It will also allow doctors to present patients with more choices when deciding on the best care for them.  
 
“The current medical device process is cumbersome and limits access to innovative devices and procedures for seniors who are willing to pay out of pocket,” said Portman. “Our bill simply allows seniors to take government out of the equation by purchasing these devices themselves rather than through Medicare. Ultimately, it will help to ensure patients and physicians have access to the most innovative medical technologies.”
 
“This bill helps ensure doctors and patients have access to the latest innovative medical technologies,” said Heinrich. “Streamlining the process for patients to purchase FDA-approved medical devices enhances treatment options in the short term, and has the potential to improve health outcomes, yielding long-term benefits for seniors.” 

“The bipartisan AIM Act opens the door to innovation by making it easier for seniors to access new, safe, and effective technology in health care on a self-pay basis,” said Thune. “Allowing for more patient choice is good for both the patient and his or her health care provider.”

“Many seniors rely on innovative medical devices to help manage their health, but the Medicare claims process can hold up their timely access to these tools,” said Bennet. “This bill gives patients new payment options to help make the best decisions with their doctors to manage their care.”
 
Text of the legislation can be found here

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