Competitive Bidding Program

What's the Competitive Bidding Program?

Medicare's Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS) Competitive Bidding Program changes the amount Medicare pays for certain DMEPOS. Under this program, suppliers submit bids to provide certain items and supplies to people with Medicare living in, or visiting, competitive bidding areas. Medicare uses these bids to set the amount it pays for each item. All suppliers are thoroughly screened to make sure they meet Medicare requirements (like eligibility and financial, quality, and accreditation standards) before they're awarded contracts.

Round 2021 of the Competitive Bidding Program began on January 1, 2021, and only includes off-the-shelf  back and knee braces. If you have 

Original Medicare

, the program requires you to get competitively bid off-the-shelf back and knee braces in competitive bidding areas from a contract supplier, unless an exception applies. 

Note

The Competitive Bidding Program applies to 

Original Medicare

 only. If you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO), your plan will let you know if your supplier is changing. If you’re not sure, contact your plan.

More about the DMEPOS Competitive Bidding Program