Representatives from ASFA's Public Affairs and Advocacy Committee recently worked with colleagues from the College of American Pathologists (CAP), the Renal Physicians Association (RPA) and the American Society for Hematology (ASH) to examine, evaluate and defend proposed increases to the existing Physician Work Relative Value Units (RVUs) schedule and the direct practice expense inputs related to six therapeutic apheresis codes. In the 2016 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) Proposed Rule, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) identified the apheresis codes as potentially misvalued. This led to a collaborative effort by members from the CAP, RPA, ASH and ASFA to perform a complicated and comprehensive financial analysis, with help from ASFA membership via a membership survey last year, to derive data for an accurate representation of inputs to perform various therapeutic apheresis procedures to be used in defending positions advocated by the societies and pertinent to proposed changes to the various procedures.
We are pleased to inform you that the CMS has accepted the recommended increases to the physician work RVUs for the six therapeutic apheresis codes (36511, 36512, 36513, 36514, 36516, and 36522) for the 2018 calendar year. Hence, the work of physicians related to therapeutic apheresis will be more fairly valued moving forward.
ASFA leadership thanks all members and colleagues from the professional societies who participated in these efforts and looks forward to future intersocietal collaborations enhancing the care and safety of apheresis medicine interventions for the patients we serve.