On August 22, Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Susan Collins (R-ME) introduced the Expanding Access to Diabetes Self-Management Training (DSMT) Act (S. 3366) in the U.S. Senate.
This is the Senate companion to legislation of the same name introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives (H.R. 5768) in May, by Reps. Tom Reed (R-NY) and Diana DeGette (D-CO).
AADE worked in collaboration with the Diabetes Advocacy Alliance and our Senate champions to introduce this important piece of legislation.
The introduced bill would reduce barriers and improve Medicare beneficiaries' access to DSMT service by:
- Allowing the initial 10 hours of DSMT during the first year to remain available until fully utilized. If there’s a determination of medical necessity, then an additional six hours of training/ education may be added.
- Allowing six hours of DSMT in subsequent years, up from two hours.
- Remove the restriction related to coverage of DSMT and Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT) services furnished on the same day.
- Exclude DSMT services from Part B cost-sharing and deductible requirements.
- Permit physicians and qualified non-physician practitioners who are not directly involved in managing an individual's diabetes to refer them for DSMT services. An example would be a specialist treating a comorbidity like gangrene and vision loss, or an emergency room doctor.
- Revise the Medicare Benefit Policy Manual to allow DSMT services to be furnished in a community-based location.
- Establishing a two-year demonstration of virtual DSMT, potentially paving the way for future Medicare coverage of virtual DSMT services.
Now that legislation has been introduced in the House and the Senate, we need the help of all diabetes educators to build support for these bills on Capitol Hill. Click here to send a letter to your legislators asking them to co-sponsor the bill in their chamber. You can also call or Tweet your members of Congress urging them to support this important legislation by becoming a cosponsor of the bill.
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