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CMS releases January 1, 2016 fee schedule amounts for non-bid areas

On November 23, 2015, CMS announced the release of the January 1, 2016 Medicare DMEPOS fee schedule amounts for items included in previous and current competitive bidding programs. These items were adjusted (downward) in accordance with CMS Final Rule 1614-F, and sections 1834(a)(1)(F) and 1842(s)(3)(B) of the Social Security Act. With the exception of current competitive bid areas, all U.S. and territory ZIP codes are affected.

VGM has prepared a presentation to clarify the new payment methodologies, as well as providing an update of current legislative activities that may mitigate some of the negative aspects of the program.

Please view the Preparing for the Expansion of Competitive Bidding Program to Rural America in 2016, by clicking here. Here you will find the January 1, 2016 fee schedule for each state and rural (all ZIPS except CBAs) areas, an estimator for the July 1, 2016 additional payment reduction, and a detailed implementation timeline and description.

If you have any questions feel free to contact Mark Higley at or call 888.224.1631 (O) or 319.504.9515 (C).

Round 1 2017 bidding advice from Mark Higley

If you are bidding in the “Round 1 2017”, the Competitive Bidding Implementation Contractor (CBIC) must receive your hardcopy financial documents on or before November 16, 2015, in order for the documents to be eligible for a covered document review and for you to be notified of any missing financial documents.

Don’t wait – send the required hardcopy financial documents TODAY!

The covered document review process gives bidders the opportunity to be notified of missing required financial documents. VGM urges all members bidding in the program to take advantage of this process.

Under the covered document review process, the CBIC will notify suppliers of any missing financial documents.

Important note: The review process only determines if there are any missing financial documents. It does not indicate if the documents are acceptable, accurate, or meet applicable requirements.

You’ll be notified by e-mail along with a letter indicating any missing financial documents within 90 days of the CDRD. The notification e-mail will be sent to the bidder’s registered authorized official and back-up authorized official. In addition to the e-mail, suppliers who are missing a financial document will also be sent a letter indicating the missing financial document(s). Those suppliers will be required to submit only the indicated missing financial document(s) within 10 business days of the notification. After the bid window closes, bidders may only submit the requested financial documents identified as part of the CDRD process and cannot submit corrections to any other required documents.

Questions? Contact Mark Higley at or 888.224.1631.

Read more at VGM National Competitive Bidding Services is committed to being the industry’s top resource. We are driven to educate and assist our members through the Competitive Bidding process, providing the necessary resources and ensuring their best chance at making the proper bidding decisions. Whether you choose to bid as an individual provider, join a network, or take advantage of subcontracting options, VGM NCB Services has the tools you need.

Seminar Series 2016

Join Mark and his colleagues at an upcoming Seminar Series near you. During the seminar, Mark will be presenting “Preparing for the Expansion of the Competitive Bidding Program to Rural America in 2016,” with specific information applicable to reimbursements in non-bid areas (and a map of the areas affected). Other topics include current audit issues, acquiring a bid contract, and an analysis as to where the industry is heading. Click here or visit

From the desk of Mark Higley: Fall Seminar Series starts next week. Reserve your seat today!

mark-higleyFall Seminar Series mission is to deliver relevant and timely information for our members to help them COMPETE, PROSPER and SUCCEED so they can continue to do what they do best…take care of patients.

Register today for a seminar nearest to you. Click here to view the list of cities Mark and the group will be visiting the next several weeks and the presentation line-up. The topics vary based on the location.

Click here to reserve your seat today!

Mark Higley’s webinar on Round 2 Recompete available to view on

Missed out on Mark Higley’s webinar about Round 2 Recompete? Or have additional questions? No problem! The webinar, along with many other resources relating to the recompete, is available for viewing on

Round 2 Recompete: Tips, Checklists and Strategies

Mark J. Higley, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, VGM Group, Inc.

This webinar offers all HME providers contemplating placing bids in the “Round 2 Recompete” program an opportunity to prepare for the myriad  steps and procedures required by the competitive bid contractor. Attendees will have access to online “tools” and checklists to assist them in the process. Participants are also urged to review these documents.


AA Homecare and VGM come together to discuss strategies and goals for 2015

Tom Ryan and Robert Steedley of AA Homecare braved Iowa’s cold temps  to visit with their allies at VGM to discuss priorities, strategies and action plans for 2015. The feeling is mutual that there is great potential for movement in our direction this first quarter of the 114th Congress. In order to see any changes for the betterment of the medical industry, our messages need to be concise and unified.

Webinar Jan. 15 and Jan. 29 Round 2 Recompete: Tips, Checklists and Strategies

VGM Smartbiz

Presenter: Mark J. Higley, Vice President-Regulatory Affairs, VGM Group, Inc.

This webinar offers all HME providers contemplating placing bids in the “Round 2 Recompete” program an opportunity to prepare for the myriad of steps and procedures required by the competitive bid contractor. Attendees will have access to online “tools” and checklists to assist them in the process. A live question-and-answer period will be offered, in addition to participants being able to email Mark specific concerns and scenarios and/or issues that they would rather not discuss during the webinar. Participants are urged to review these documents prior to the webinar.

Learning Objectives: Successful Registration, Bid/Forms Placement and Submission, Hard-copy Document Checklist, Some Pitfalls – Be Wary!

Register here for Jan. 15

Register here for Jan. 29