Eliminating Endocrinologist Consultations

This press release is an announcement submitted by AACE, and was not written by Diabetes Health.

The CMS decision, which will go into effect in January 2010, will no longer allow endocrinologists and other specialists to bill for consultations provided for patients referred to them by primary care physicians.

Dec 15, 2009

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Dec. 7 -- A survey just conducted by the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) indicates that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) decision to eliminate consultation codes will force four out of five endocrinologists to reduce the number of Medicare patients seen in their practices.

The CMS decision, which will go into effect in January 2010, will no longer allow endocrinologists and other specialists to bill for consultations provided for patients referred to them by primary care physicians. Written reports will no longer have to be provided to referring physicians. Endocrinologists are specialists who assist in the management of patients with complex cases of diabetes, thyroid disorders and other endocrine-related conditions.

"The new CMS Rule threatens to marginalize the critical role clinical endocrinologists play as consultants--at a time when our nation is facing a diabetes epidemic and we are striving to coordinate complex medical care for an increasing number of our patients," AACE President and Chief of Endocrinology at Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates, Dr. Jeffrey R. Garber said. "This will undermine Congress' effort to improve the quality of care older Americans receive and their access to it."

In the United States, the conditions in which endocrinologists specialize, including diabetes, thyroid disease, and osteoporosis, have reached epidemic proportions. More than 20 million Americans suffer from type 2 diabetes and approximately 50 million have a condition that precedes it called pre-diabetes. More than 10 million Americans are known to have thyroid disorders, while approximately 40 million Americans have osteoporosis and low bone mass.

As AACE currently seeks to delay the new policy, Dr. Garber is encouraging all specialists and their patients to write letters to members of Congress and sign the online petition to reverse the elimination of these codes at www.keepthecodes.com.

About the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE)

AACE is a professional medical organization with more than 6,000 members in the United States and 91 other countries. Founded in 1991, AACE is dedicated to the optimal care of patients with endocrine problems. AACE initiatives inform the public about endocrine disorders. AACE also conducts continuing education programs for clinical endocrinologists, physicians whose advanced, specialized training enables them to be experts in the care of endocrine disease, such as diabetes, thyroid disorders, growth hormone deficiency, osteoporosis, cholesterol disorders, hypertension and obesity. For more information about AACE, visit our Web site at www.aace.com, become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/theaace or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/theaace.

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SOURCE:

American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists AACE 

 

 

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Categories: Diabetes, Diabetes, Endocrinology, Government & Policy, Health Care, Health Insurance, Type 1 Issues, Type 2 Issues


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Comments

Posted by Steve Parker, M.D. on 15 December 2009

This is just a foretaste of government-run medical care. And people want more of this?

-Steve

Posted by Jerry1423 on 15 December 2009

This is just the thing that we will see more of when health care run by the federal government comes to be, possibly as soon as a couyple weeks.
The ADA (American Diabetes Association) is loobying hard for health care run by the federal government. They will never see any of my money.

Posted by Anonymous on 16 December 2009

I'd register, but I don't have the time. I am Dianna K. Goneau Inkster. Kingstonpumps@hotmail.com To get a free insulin pump and $2,400 for insulin pump supplies we have to be Ontario Health Insurance Plan members and see a Certified Diabetes Educator or a Endorcrinologist every 6 mo after we have been recommended for a pump by the endocrinologist. The pump is paid for by the Ontario Government's Ministry of Health and Long Term Care's ASSISTIVE DEVICES PROGRAMME. There are obviously different styles of public healthcare. Go for one that is BETTER than private. Happy pumping!

Posted by gwolt49 on 16 December 2009

Could it be that someone saw a duplication of services here? Why couldn't the refering physician or health services org. supply the basic information needed to regulate most cases?
Maybe I'm missing something here, but diet, exercise,regular monitoring and dosing goes a long way toward living a great life.
More "consultants" may be good for them, but
it looks like overkill for us.
Gary W.

Posted by Anonymous on 21 December 2009

Gary W, I agree with you. My visits to an endocrinologist were a waste of time and money. And when I needed her most following surgery, she refused to see me. It's just another way for doctors to support each other. Did you ever try to discuss poor treatment by a physician with another physician? They protect each other rather than follow up with the physician in question to see what went wrong.

Posted by Anonymous on 24 December 2009

Apparently most of you must be T2's ... being so negative about this.. It's been a common misleading thing to think a T2 should Automatically have to go see a Endo after being diagnosed as a T2 Diabetic, just to get some Metformin and be told the same thing your PC Dr. should have said..

1. You have to Loose at least 25% of your Obesity weight( 93% of T2's are obeise to morbid obese..)
2. You Have to Make Major Changes in your Eating habits ( eating less than 30 tot carbs per meals and no snacks)
3. Have to exercise & walk at least 1 mile per day ..

Only those that Remain Non Compliant and have maxed out their Meds, then have to go on Insulin, Butt only need Long lasting and Not Fast acting..thus still don't need to see an Endo..

Far too many T2's have been sent to Endos and backing up the system for the More Needed by T1's.. and thus why the new Ruling...& Rightfully so..

Sorry, but that is the reality of the reason for this change.

Posted by Anonymous on 30 December 2009

To be eligible for an islet cell transplant or a pancreas transplant you are required to see aan endocrinologist every 3 months. Medicare will not cover enough test strips to test my BS as many times as the Dr recommends in order to avoid lows. After 39 yrs. of being a type 1 brittle diabetic I no longer have warning signs of low BS. i test my BS every 2 hrs. They will also not cover a cgm which will allow me to live w/o passing out and requiring glucagon injections. I do not skip meals and I eat a snack 2 hrs. after I eat a meal. I am on an insulin pump and need a cgm for survival. What a hypocrosy goverment healthcare is. There is already government healthcare called medicare. There should not be an option to keep the healthcare that you have. Politicians should have the same healthcare as everyone else. Just think how fast medicare would be fixed if it was their healthcare option.


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