Groups ask Congress not to regulate CMS drug decisions

A coalition of consumer groups are asking Congress not to countermand a recent decision by CMS to limit Medicare coverage for anemia medication use. They've written a letter asking Reps. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Mike Rogers (R-MI) to reconsider their Congressional Review Act joint resolution, a measure which would require CMS to reverse the anemia decision.

The coalition members, which include the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, the Center for Science in the Public Interest and Consumers Union, suggest that regardless of the merits in this case, getting Congress involved in medical decision-making would "set a terrible precedent." Their position is that once you open up such decisions to the lobbying process, Congress would be under terrible pressure to demand that CMS spend money in ways that suit their donors' interests. (Coalition members seem especially concerned about the demands of medical product makers and medical specialty organizations.)

To find out more about the debate:
- read this Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report item

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