On May 22, the American Hospital Association (AHA) wrote a letter to Congress urging passage of the Saving Access to Laboratory Services Act (SALSA; H.R. 1835/S.1000). This bill would update Medicare payment rates for certain clinical diagnostic laboratory tests to be based on a statistical sampling of private sector rates.

In the letter, the AHA stresses the urgency of the bill’s passage ahead of a fourth round of Medicare reimbursement cuts scheduled for Jan. 1, 2024, stating that additional cuts “could jeopardize access to many clinical laboratory tests that are used to diagnose, monitor, prevent, and manage common diseases for Medicare beneficiaries.” The letter was cosigned by several organizations representing clinical laboratories and health care providers, including the American Clinical Laboratory Association.

The College of American Pathologists (CAP) has also continued to press lawmakers into action on passage of SALSA. Most recently, the CAP reported success in gaining two committed co-sponsors in Congress as a result of lobbying efforts by pathologists during the annual CAP Hill Day.

Since the reintroduction of SALSA in the House and Senate, progress has moved slowly. On April 7, the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Health by the House Energy and Commerce Committee.