2013-03-01 19:04:34 UTC

Take Action on the Colonoscopy Co-Insurance Medicare Issue

March 14, 2013

Medicare patients who have a screening colonoscopy continue to be subjected to a co-insurance when the screening turns therapeutic. AGA advocates that legislators correct this issue, but we need your help to reach out to Congress to make sure the voice of GI is heard.

The GI community recently received great news that a government guidance clarified its policy related to cost sharing for colonoscopy for privately insured patients. However, patients with Medicare are still subject to colonoscopy co-insurance when a screening turns therapeutic, which affects a large portion of patients who need to be screened.

We urge you to contact your legislators to tell them to fix the co-insurance issue for your Medicare patients. While the AGA will continue to advocate that legislators correct the colonoscopy coinsurance issue for Medicare patients as well, we need your help. Legislators need to hear from their constituents that this loophole needs to be fixed.

On Wednesday, March 20, join AGA, Fight Colorectal Cancer and a number of other GI societies and patient advocacy groups to reach out to Congress for the “United Behind a Cure Congressional Call In.” Call 1-866-615-3375 to tell your legislator that you support a bill in Congress that ensures that screening colonoscopy is free to all Medicare beneficiaries, regardless of whether a polyp or other tissue is removed.

Read the AGA issue brief on Medicare beneficiary cost sharing.

We continue to make great strides in our knowledge about the detection, prevention and treatment of colorectal cancer, but more work needs to be done to ensure this research translates to improved patient care. By working together, we can help increase colorectal cancer screening rates to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with the disease.

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