On July 15, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced its plans to recompete the supplier contracts awarded in Round 2 of the Medicare Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS) Competitive Bidding Program and the National Mail-Order diabetic testing supplies competition, as it is required by statute to do at least every three years.  The current contract period expires June 30, 2016; the new contracts will begin on July 1, 2016.  For the recompete, CMS is making changes to both the composition of the product categories (including adding new products) and the number of competitive bidding areas (CBAs).

The product categories to be included in the Round 2 Recompete are as follows:

  • Enteral Nutrients, Equipment and Supplies
  • General Home Equipment and Related Supplies and Accessories
    • includes hospital beds and related accessories, group 1 and 2 support surfaces, commode chairs, patient lifts, and seat lifts
  • Nebulizers and Related Supplies
  • Negative Pressure Wound Therapy (NPWT) Pumps and Related Supplies and Accessories
  • Respiratory Equipment and Related Supplies and Accessories
    • includes oxygen, oxygen equipment, and supplies; continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) devices and respiratory assist devices (RADs) and related supplies and accessories
  • Standard Mobility Equipment and Related Accessories
    • includes walkers, standard power and manual wheelchairs, scooters, and related accessories
  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) Devices and Supplies

This configuration reflects the following changes:  the current Oxygen and CPAP Devices/Respiratory Assist Devices product categories were combined into a single product category; the current Walkers and Wheelchairs/Scooters categories were combined into a single product category; a new General Home Equipment category was created, including the previous Hospital Beds and Support Surfaces categories in addition to new products; and a new TENS devices product category was added.  Suppliers can bid on one or more product categories, but they must bid on all specified HCPCS codes within the category.  A list of the specific items in each product category is available on the Competitive Bidding Implementation Contractor (CBIC) website.

CMS is conducting the Round 2 Recompete in the same geographic areas that were included in Round 2.  Because of changes to the metropolitan statistical areas and boundary changes to ensure that no CBA is included in more than one state, however, there will be 117 CBAs in the Round 2 Recompete (compared to 100 in the current competition).  A list of the ZIP codes included in each CBA is also available on the CBIC website.

CMS will also be conducting the National Mail-Order Recompete for diabetic testing supplies concurrently with the Round 2 Recompete.  The competition will include all parts of the United States, including the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa.

CMS has announced the following general timeline for the Round 2 Recompete/National Mail Order Recompete:

July 15, 2014

  • CMS begins “pre-bidding supplier awareness program”

Fall 2014

  • CMS announces bidding schedule
  • CMS begins bidder education program
  • Bidder registration period to obtain user ID and passwords begins

Winter 2015

  • Bidding begins

Suppliers considering bidding should prepare now, including ensuring that their enrollment files at the National Supplier Clearinghouse are current, and that they are accredited and hold all necessary state licenses for any products for which they will bid.  For more information about the DMEPOS bidding program, see our previous postings at https://www.healthindustrywashingtonwatch.com/tags/dmepos-competitive-bidding/.