A bill that would increase the surety bond amount required for DMEPOS from $50,000 to $500,000 has not made much progress since it was referred to committee on January 5.
A GovTrack.us summary of the bill says H.R. 173: Medicare Fraud Prevention Act of 2011 would
“amend titles XI and XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide increased civil and criminal penalties for acts involving fraud and abuse under the Medicare Program and to increase the amount of the surety bond required for suppliers of durable medical equipment.”
The bill was introduced on January 5 and has been in committee ever since. Three committees are currently reviewing the bill:
- House Ways and Means Committee
- House Energy and Commerce Committee
- House Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Health
DMEPOS bonds are also known as Medicare bonds. Existing regulations went into effect in January 2009 and require all manufacturers and suppliers of durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics and supplies to provide a $50,000 DMEPOS bond to deter instances of medical fraud and malpractice.
A number of surety producers and DMEPOS suppliers have spoken out against the bill as its potential passing would mean many small DMEPOS businesses would not have the bonding capacity required to qualify for a surety bond with such a hefty penal sum.