In the December 2022 omnibus, Congress passed legislation making payment for the services and supplies needed for home infusions of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) a permanent Medicare benefit for those with primary immunodeficiency (PI). Before this legislation made full coverage permanent, Medicare Part B allowed patients with PI to receive their IVIG at home but only covered the cost of the immunoglobulin medication. Beneficiaries either had to pay for the supplies and services needed out of pocket or opt to receive the infusions in an outpatient setting, where supplies and services were covered.
Faegre Drinker provided lobbying services to the Immune Deficiency Foundation (IDF), an advocacy, education, and research organization supporting patients with PI, as they pursued passage of this permanent benefit that corrects the long-standing hole in Medicare Part B. Faegre Drinker had previously helped IDF extend a 2014 demonstration program that temporarily allowed the coverage of not only IVIG treatment, but the nursing services necessary to provide IVIG treatment at home. Since then, IDF has been pursuing a permanent remedy.
This permanent benefit will take effect starting January 1, 2024, the day after the current demonstration program sunsets. The new permanent Medicare IVIG payment will cover the supplies, nursing services, and immunoglobulin required for PI patients to receive IVIG infusions in their own home.