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Contact Congress to Support the Prohibition Of Self-Referrals for Anatomic Pathology Services

Monday, September 30, 2013

On Aug. 1, 2013, Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) introduced H.R. 2914, the “Promoting Integrity in Medicare Act of 2013 (PIMA).” Passage of PIMA would prohibit the harmful self-referral of anatomic pathology (AP), diagnostic imaging, radiation therapy, and physical therapy services by eliminating these service types from the in-office ancillary service exception (IOASE) to the Stark law.

Without the Stark reform proposed in PIMA, the ability of clinicians to self-refer for these services will continue to incentivize abusive billing practices, such as price markups, kickbacks, and fee splitting—all of which drive overutilization and increased costs. Worse yet, this overutilization often results in distorted rational medical decision-making that can potentially threaten patient safety by exposing them to inappropriate, unnecessary, and often invasive medical tests.

As pathologists and laboratory professionals, the depth of our influence on the patient community cannot be overstated. The tests we perform each day serve as the foundation for up to 70% of all medical decision-making. Hence, it is our responsibility to patients to halt the overutilization of testing at this initial stage of care so as not to perpetuate its harmful byproducts throughout the remainder of the care continuum.

Please help ASCP to protect our patients by encouraging your members of Congress to support Stark reform and the passage of PIMA. You can access our draft letter on this issue, customize it to your liking, share it with friends, and send it to Congress through the ASCP eAdvocacy Center.

For more details on this issue, please see ASCP’s Policy Statement on “ Self-Referral, Markups, Fee Splitting, and Related Practices .”

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