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Lab Organizations Urge Congress to Pass SALSA Legislation to Reform PAMA

NEW YORK – Laboratory and medical provider organizations including the American Clinical Laboratory Association, the American Association for Clinical Chemistry, the College of American Pathologists, and the National Independent Laboratory Association sent a letter to Congress on Thursday urging the passage of the Saving Access to Laboratory Service Act, or SALSA.

Introduced in June in both the House and the Senate, SALSA would modify the Protecting Access to Medicare Act by instituting a sampling-based approach to collecting lab test pricing data and placing caps limiting the maximum price cut or rise a test could see under PAMA to 5 percent a year.

Proponents say the bill's sampling-based approach would both alleviate the administrative burden on labs and ensure that price data is collected from a more representative slice of the industry.

The bill would also stop price cuts scheduled under current law to go into effect at the start of 2023, extend the time between price reporting periods from three years to four.

Signed by more than 20 provider organizations, the letter sent to Congress this week called the bill "a permanent solution that would set Medicare reimbursement for lab services on a sustainable path forward" and asked that it be enacted before the end of the year so as to avoid reimbursement cuts scheduled to go into effect at the beginning of 2023.