At the Federal Level:
ISCD, Fracture Prevention Coalition Highlight National Osteoporosis Month. New Co-Sponsors Added to DXA Bills.
At the federal level, the ISCD, as part of the Fracture Prevention Coalition, continues to work on building support for HR 3517 the Increasing Access to Osteoporosis Testing for Medicare Beneficiaries Act of 2021 introduced by Rep. John Larson (CT-01) with Reps. Linda Sánchez (CA-38), Lori Trahan (MA-03), Michael Burgess M.D. (TX-26), and Jackie Walorski (IN-02) and S. 1943 introduced by Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) with Sen. Cardin (D-MD), Sen. Marshall (R-KS), Sen. Stabenow (D-MI), Sen. Capito (R-WV), Sen. King (I-ME), Sen. Cassidy (R-LA), Sen. Sinema (D-AZ), Sen. Menendez (D-NJ), and Sen. Rosen (D-NV). As you know, these bills have been introduced to improve access to osteoporosis screening by increasing the Medicare reimbursement for DXA testing from the current $39 to $98.
A concerted effort to add co-sponsors to the DXA bills has been under way and National Osteoporosis Month created new momentum. The Coalition shared information relating to osteoporosis with members of Congress, highlighting the cost of the disease on both the health care system and the quality of life of patients. We’re pleased to report that several new co-sponsors were added. Currently, HR 3517 has 67 co-sponsors and S. 1943 has 16 co-sponsors. More are expected soon. Important information on the proposals can be found on the coalition website at www.fracturepreventioncoalition.org.
ISCD Legislative Counsel, Donna Fiorentino, continues to share our story, meeting with members of the US House and Senate on the DXA bills, discussing the decline in testing while sharing both state and national statistics on hip fractures and fracture related deaths.
We will continue to demonstrate local grassroots support for HR 3517 and S. 1943 and urge ISCD members to participate in our advocacy efforts by sending a quick email to their Congressional delegation by clicking here. If you have a story to share or if your member of Congress or Senators have not co-sponsored the legislation, please contact Donna for more details on how you can help us with your Congressional delegation at email@example.com.
At the State Level:
Many state legislatures are winding down their activities for the year. However, at least nine states are still in session. The ISCD continues to monitor and work in those states to make sure that our certification programs are recognized. While legislative sessions have concluded in many states, state agencies will continue to enact regulations that may affect our members. We will monitor these regulations as they are proposed in the upcoming months.
Since January, the ISCD legislative team has reviewed 181 different proposals across 36 states that have a potential impact on our members. Of the 181 proposals, 157 are legislative and 24 were proposed regulations. We expect the number of regulations to increase during this next quarter.
As mask mandates have abated in many states, state officials began in-person meetings and hearings this year, but most have also adopted a hybrid approach by continuing virtual options for constituents.
Of particular interest in the past months was a bill proposed in Missouri, HB 2166, that would regulate radiologic technologists for the first time in that state. The ISCD has worked over the past year to ensure that our CBDT certification program was specifically mentioned and therefore recognized in the new bill. Unfortunately, the proposed legislation was not adopted before the Missouri General Assembly adjourned in May. We expect that this bill will be introduced again in January of 2023 when the legislature reconvenes.
The ISCD reviews each legislative or regulatory proposal in depth. We provide a legal analysis of legislative proposals, contact the sponsors, prepare and submit testimony, and reach out to our members to enlist their help in our grassroots efforts. In the case of proposed regulations, the ISCD contacts the state regulatory agency, have conversations with staff, and prepare comments and written testimony for our members.
We will continue to update our members on key state activities that impact the ISCD. We thank those members who we reach out to for their expertise and support in their individual states and look forward to more successful outcomes.