Rep. Ed Whitfield, R-Ky., introduced the Consistency, Accuracy, Responsibility and Excellence in Medical Imaging and Radiation Therapy bill in the House of Representatives on March 13, marking the eighth time the bill has been introduced in the House in the past 13 years.
H.R. 1146 would set federal education and certification standards in the Medicare program for the technical personnel providing, planning and delivering all medical imaging examinations and radiation therapy treatments.
Introduction of the CARE bill is one tactic toward achieving federal minimum standards. The American Society of Radiologic Technologists also is pursuing the insertion of amendatory language that incorporates the CARE bill's principles into any federal bill that includes Medicare provisions. This includes bills addressing sequestration, the debt ceiling and entitlement reform.
According to ASRT President Donna Thaler Long, M.S.M., R.T.(R)(M)(QM), FASRT, working toward attaching amendatory language to future bills and supporting the CARE bill provides the association with more opportunities to achieve its goal.
"It has proven to be extremely difficult for a stand-alone bill to gain any traction in Congress, so we are going to pursue additional approaches to obtaining federal minimum standards. Our primary strategy for the remainder of this year will be to persuade Congress to attach our proposal as an amendment to a larger bill. Our lobbyists will target any bill that includes Medicare provisions as a possible vehicle for our amendatory language," said Long.