Lab Matters Winter 2019 - Page 19

FOOD SAFETY & INFECTIOUS DISEASES reimbursement of three to five pathogen panels in limited clinical circumstances and issuing a no-coverage decision for respiratory viral panels of six or more pathogens (see call-out box). Moreover, LCDs for GIP panels maintained that reimbursement will only be issued for five targets (though with the addendum that if Clostridium difficile colitis is suspected, coverage will be expanded for up to 11 targets) (see call-out box). Though the long-term impact of these policy changes is unclear, APHL foresees revisions to clinical ordering and testing practices. A decrease in clinical laboratory testing as a result of these policies would potentially weaken public health surveillance systems that rely on these data streams. Dr. Pete Shult, associate director of the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene, notes that as a public health laboratory there is “relatively low impact,” but he intends to contact clinical partners “to understand the impact on clinical labs and, ultimately, the quality and robustness of state surveillance data.” It is possible that these decisions will eventually drive the diagnostic testing market toward smaller tailored panels. These reimbursement policy decisions illustrate the need for continued dialogue among stakeholders from CMS, private payers, clinical and public health laboratories, MACs and the medical device industry. While there is impetus to limit reimbursement for these panels– particularly as the number of analytes continues to grow–public health agencies need to be aware of the potential impact to diagnostic testing and surveillance. APHL will continue to monitor the effects of this policy change and engage members accordingly. n Respiratory Viral Panel Palmetto Local Coverage Determination Respiratory viral NAAT panels including 3-5 pathogens will be reimbursed only in limited circumstances (i.e., tests under the 87631 code will be covered in susceptible populations). Panels including 6 or more pathogens are not covered. The Association for Biosafety and Biosecurity Your Biosafety Resource! ABSA International was founded in 1984 to promote biosafety as a scientific discipline and serve the growing biosafety and biosecurity needs of scientists, laboratorians, health care workers, and biosafety professionals throughout the world. ABSA International Activities and Resources • • • • • • • • Annual Biological Safety Conference, Training Courses, and Webinars Applied Biosafety: Journal of ABSA International Biosafety Publications – Including Anthology of Biosafety Series Biosafety Training Resources Animal Biosafety Training Video – www.absa.org/resanimal.html Credentialed Biosafety Professionals – Registered Biosafety Professional (RBP) and Certified Biological Safety Professional (CBSP) BSL-2/-3 and ABSL-2/-3 Accreditation Program – www.absaaccreditation.org Biosafety ListServ, Job Board, Risk Group Database, Biosafety Buyer’s Guide, Training Tools, and more… www.absa.org PublicHealthLabs @APHL APHL.org Winter 2019 LAB MATTERS 17