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Negative pressure wound therapy coding

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

CMS is on track to issue a final decision on negative pressure wound therapy coding in November after hearing public comments on the issue at a July 9 meeting in Baltimore. In June, the agency proposed to keep NPWT devices in one Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System code, in line with recommendations from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (1"The Gray Sheet" June 15, 2009). At the meeting, representatives of Smith & Nephew, Medela, Prospera, Ohio Medical and ConvaTec voice support for CMS' proposal, in opposition to Kinetic Concepts' call for a new distinct Medicare code to set its V.A.C. technology apart. A recent AHRQ report found insufficient evidence to conclude V.A.C. provides clinical therapeutic superiority over competing products. According to Kinetic Concepts Chief Medical Officer Todd Fruchterman, calls for industry-sponsored comparative trials are complicated by the sheer number of different wound care products and types of wounds that could be studied

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