The Medicare Part B Improvement Act, HR 3178, has passed the House of Representatives. The bill includes a measure to give dialysis clinics the option to seek certification from an approved third party, and a measure to allow dialysis facilities and the home to be approved telemedicine originating sites for home dialysis.

Read also: Dialysis clinic surveys: Waiting, waiting, waiting 

CMS has struggled to keep up with requests for initial certifications and approving expansions on dialysis units and other health care facilities for years.  Most other health care providers are able to seek approval from independent third party accreditors.

“The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services classifies the inspection of new dialysis centers a ‘Tier III’ priority, meaning that facilities must wait months or even years to receive CMS certification,” said the bill’s lead sponsor Representative Lynn Jenkins, R-Kansas. “Though a new dialysis center in Topeka applied for inspection in October 2015, it was informed 10 months later that it would have to wait at least another 13 months (until September 2017) to be surveyed.”