WALTHAM, Mass., Sept. 30, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- BG Medicine, Inc. (Nasdaq:BGMD) announced today that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have made a preliminary decision to set the Medicare payment rate for the Company's BGM Galectin-3 ® test at the amount of a cross walked test whose 2013 national limitation amount is $30.24, subject to a final determination by CMS by year-end 2013. The new payment rate, if finalized, will replace the BGM Galectin-3 ® test's national limitation amount of $17.80 that was effective in 2013.
"We are very pleased that CMS agreed to reconsider the payment rate for our BGM Galectin-3 test," said Dr. Paul R. Sohmer, President and Chief Executive Officer of BG Medicine. "We believe that the revised payment rate more appropriately reflects the value of this important diagnostic test."
This preliminary determination by CMS comes in response to BG Medicine's request for reconsideration of the 2013 CMS determination. The BGM Galectin-3 test is a novel test, which is cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as an aid in assessing the prognosis of patients with chronic heart failure."We believe that the BGM Galectin-3 test provides a critical tool for physicians and other healthcare providers who make decisions regarding the care of patients with chronic heart failure," Dr. Sohmer added. "The identification of chronic heart failure patients, who are at greater risk of near term adverse events, should enable hospitals and physicians to better direct their patient management strategies and resources to those who need them most." The BGM Galectin-3 test has been studied in over 10,000 patients, across dozens of distinct clinical studies. Earlier in 2013, BG Medicine announced inclusion of Galectin-3 as biomarker of Myocardial Fibrosis in the 2013 ACCF/AHA Guideline for Management of Heart Failure. The 2014 payment rate is subject to overall adjustments to the Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule for 2014, including Consumer Price Index (CPI) and productivity adjustments, and a 1.75% reduction mandated under the Affordable Care Act. In addition, the payment is expected to be subject to a 2% sequestration applicable to Medicare services.