Medicare is miscalculating the drug costs it pays to dialysis centers, making it difficult to determine whether the agency is making appropriate payments, according to a government report.
In 2011, Medicare began paying a bundled payment for dialysis services, including the use of erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs). The change spurred some concerns that facilities might seek to boost profits by underusing ESAs. Although the bundled payments appeared to have decreased the use of dialysis-related drugs, the report found that the payment does not reflect cost fluctuations of individual drugs within the bundle nor the actual costs of the individual drugs.
From JAMA’s Daily News Site. JAMA. 2014;311(21):2161. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.6044