The Heart Valve Disease Policy Task Force will be on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, September 26 to brief members of Congress and their staff about how Medicare’s reimbursement policy may affect access to a critically-important and often patient-preferred treatment for heart valve disease – transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR).
In June, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) decided to reconsider its nationwide policy on whether, and under what circumstances, Medicare will pay for TAVR. TAVR is an innovative alternative to open-heart surgery that uses a catheter inserted into a patient’s artery to guide and deploy a new aortic heart valve. Studies show that heart valve disease patients who undergo TAVR, compared to those who have open-heart surgery, experience much shorter hospital stays and recovery times, better quality of life measures, and lower incidence of some major complications.
Data indicates significant disparities exist for those who have the TAVR procedure based on race, ethnicity, income, and where people live. Changes to Medicare’s TAVR coverage policy might make this worse.
Congress must hear from heart disease advocates who are fighting for increased, not decreased, access to this important heart valve disease treatment!
You can join the #TAVRHillDay on September 26 from the comfort of your own home by participating virtually! Contact your members of Congress by phone, email and social media (using the #TAVRHillDay hashtag).