STS Prepares Comments for Updated CMS TAVR Coverage Proposal
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has proposed an updated national coverage determination (NCD) for transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) that would require hospitals to perform 50 aortic valve replacements each year—including at least 20 TAVRs—in order to maintain a TAVR program. The CMS proposal is less rigorous than recommendations that STS, along with the American Association for Thoracic Surgery, American College of Cardiology, and Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions, published as an expert consensus last July. All four societies are currently working together to submit comments on behalf of their respective members.
STS Endorses Letters on Deferred Loan Payments, Physician Shortage, and Tobacco Use
The Society has joined dozens of national medical societies, public health groups, and research organizations in sending letters to Congress and government agencies urging action on the following issues:
- Deferred Loan Payment—Congressional appropriators were asked to support the Resident Education Deferred Interest (REDI) Act, which would allow medical and dental residents to defer their student loans interest free during residency.
- Resident Physician Shortage—Lawmakers were asked to support the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act, which would increase the number of residency slots in order to address the looming cardiothoracic surgeon shortage as older physicians retire.
- Smoking & Health
- The Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies was asked to support a $100 million increase in funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Office on Smoking and Health to address the growing epidemic of e-cigarette use among youth, expand existing programs that work, and target groups/regions disproportionately harmed by tobacco use.
- The Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and Related Agencies was asked to approve the authorized level of user fees ($712 million) for the FDA to oversee tobacco products.
Questions? Want to get involved in advocacy?
Contact the STS Government Relations office via email or at 202-787-1230.