November 11, 2021
The Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging lauds last week’s decision by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to remove exclusionary language relating to the non-oncologic use of positron emission tomography (PET), expanding access to critical care for patients. The change followed ten years of meetings, letters, and supporting data from SNMMI and its members.
“This decision opens a pathway for patients with cardiac, neurologic, infectious, inflammatory and other conditions to have nuclear medicine procedures that are highly effective for precision diagnosis of their disease,” said Richard Wahl, MD, president of SNMMI. Nuclear medicine can pinpoint the location and function of specific molecules within the body, often offering physicians information that other available procedures can’t provide.
The change to CMS’s National Coverage Decision 220.6 – Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scans allows decisions about reimbursement for the use of PET for non-oncologic indications to be made quickly and effectively at the discretion of local Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs). The new rule will go into effect on January 1, 2022. SNMMI is preparing to work with MACs in a multi-society effort to ensure the smooth implementation of this coverage rule.
“Removal of the exclusion will enable physicians to base their care decisions on using the right procedure for the right patient at the right time,” said Wahl.
SNMMI continues to work with CMS to remove non-coverage decisions for amyloid PET and NaF PET.
About the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
The Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) is an international scientific and medical organization dedicated to advancing nuclear medicine and molecular imaging, vital elements of precision medicine that allow diagnosis and treatment to be tailored to individual patients in order to achieve the best possible outcomes.
SNMMI’s members set the standard for molecular imaging and nuclear medicine practice by creating guidelines, sharing information through journals and meetings and leading advocacy on key issues that affect molecular imaging and therapy research and practice. For more information, visit www.snmmi.org.