ASPE weighs the value of innovation
WASHINGTON, Aug. 7, 2012—A new HHS report titled “Health Care Cost Containment and Medical Innovation” finds the question of whether health innovation adds value to be a close call, saying that “on average, research suggests that additional innovation is welfare enhancing.” Authored by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, the report cautions that “additional innovation may not be an efficient use of resources. In the health care market, where consumers frequently do not directly pay for their health care, products may be purchased whose price exceeds the consumer’s true willingness to pay, leading to over-investment in innovation.”
Drugs, DME, supplies and other fruits of innovation were addressed in May/June HCPCS public meeting summaries that CMS just released. At one level, of course, the documents are simply what they’re labeled: summaries of what happened at the meetings. But they can also provide important clues about stakeholder receptivity to the agency’s preliminary decisions, which is important information for anyone interested in how this fall’s final decisions on 2013 HCPCS Level II coding revisions will turn out.
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