March 16, 2004
Medicare Coverage ~ Questions for Public Input on PET for Alzheimer's
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is requesting input from the public regarding the use of PET scans in diagnosing mild to moderate Alzheimer's Disease (AD) in cases where other causes of symptoms confound the diagnosis of dementia or to assist with the diagnosis of early dementia when the differential diagnosis includes one or more kinds of neurodegenerative disease.
The request for public comments comes in response to a petition by the University of California at Los Angeles School of Medicine to reconsider an earlier decision by CMS to deny coverage of PET in the diagnosis of AD. That request was supported by a statement from the Alzheimer's Association.
The CMS website (see below) provides details on submitting comments plus a specific list of questions that CMS is soliciting input on, including staff and facility qualifications, medical and clinical prerequisites, and alternatives to PET. Responses are due by March 31, 2004.