CMS Proposes to Deny Medicare Payments for Tax-Delinquent Equipment Suppliers
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CMS Proposes to Deny Medicare Payments for Tax-Delinquent Equipment Suppliers

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has proposed new standards for all durable medical equipment suppliers to meet in order to participate in the Medicare program, including a requirement that suppliers not have any tax delinquency involving the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or a state taxing authority.

"To ensure that Medicare payments are only being made to organizations and individuals who have satisfied existing tax debts, we will have a basis to revoke the billing privileges of a [durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies] supplier, including physicians and non-physician practitioners who are also enrolled as a DMEPOS supplier, that has failed to comply with this standard," according to the proposed rule.

CMS cited findings by the Government Accountability Office that more than 21,000 providers reimbursed under Medicare Part B owed tax debts totaling more than $1 billion in 2005.

Similarly, CMS is proposing to revise the Medicare application to require that DMEPOS suppliers certify they do not have an IRS or state taxing authority delinquency.

The proposed rule was published in the January 25 Federal Register.  CMS will accept comments on the proposed rule until March 25.

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