Joint Statement by the Alliance for Integrity in Medicare Applauding IOAS Reform Proposal in the Updated Simpson-Bowles Proposal, Entitled, "A Bipartisan Path Forward to Securing America's Future"

FAIRFAX, Va., April 19, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Alliance for Integrity in Medicare (AIM), a broad coalition of medical specialty, laboratory, radiation oncology, and medical imaging groups committed to ending the practice of inappropriate physician self-referral is pleased that the updated Simpson-Bowles proposal, released today, recommends constricting the in-office ancillary services (IOAS) exception. AIM has long supported the position expressed by the Moment of Truth Project on physician self-referral.

The organizations comprising the AIM Coalition continue to be gravely concerned about the ongoing misapplication of the IOAS exception to the physician self-referral law. We believe this loophole results in increased spending, unnecessary utilization of medical services, and potentially compromised patient choice and care, thus eroding the integrity of the Medicare program.

The AIM Coalition remains steadfastly committed to improving patient care and preserving valuable Medicare resources. We believe the recommendation in the updated Simpson-Bowles proposal is a commendable step towards those ends. Furthermore, AIM strongly urges Congress to follow the lead of the Moment of Truth Project and pass legislation to remove advanced diagnostic imaging, anatomic pathology, radiation therapy, and physical therapy from the IOAS exception in the 113th Congress. Reforming this policy will ensure that Medicare patients receive the highest quality and safest health care most appropriate to their needs, and Medicare policy incentives are properly aligned, which is in the best interests of beneficiaries, providers, and our nation's health system overall.

The Alliance for Integrity in Medicare:

American Clinical Laboratory Association

American College of Radiology

American Physical Therapy Association

American Society for Clinical Pathology

American Society for Radiation Oncology

Association for Quality Imaging

College of American Pathologists

Radiology Business Management Association

CONTACT: Michelle Kirkwood 703-286-1600 press@astro.orgSource:American Society for Radiation Oncology