CMS proposes fee increase for labs: 4 things to know

CMS issued a notice to raise fees 20 percent for laboratories certified under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments, the agency said Dec. 28.

Here are four things to know:

1. Under the CLIA statue, CMS must impose user fees to offset the costs of running the CLIA program. Laboratories are required to get CLIA certification from CMS to perform testing.

2. The increase marks the first fee change in 20 years. CMS said the current fee schedule was based on assumptions made in 1992 about the program's operations and workload.

3. To maintain the CLIA program through fiscal year 2021, CMS is proposing a 20 percent fee increase.

4. "CMS is required to update the program's fee schedule because current fees are no longer sufficient to cover costs of the CLIA program," the agency said. "This fee increase helps ensure the CLIA program can continue to be self-sustaining, as required by provisions of the law."

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