Montana Administrative Register Notice 37-797 No. 2   01/26/2018    
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In the matter of the amendment of ARM 37.86.1806 pertaining to updating durable medical equipment rules to reflect a sole-source provider for the purchase of breast pumps








TO: All Concerned Persons


1. On June 9, 2017, the Department of Public Health and Human Services published MAR Notice No. 37-797 pertaining to the public hearing on the proposed amendment of the above-stated rule at page 773 of the 2017 Montana Administrative Register, Issue Number 11. On November 24, 2017, the Department of Public Health and Human Services published an Extension of Comment Period on Proposed Amendment at page 2140 of the 2017 Montana Administrative Register, Issue Number 22.


2. The department has amended the above-stated rule as proposed.


3. The department has thoroughly considered the comments and testimony received. A summary of the comments received and the department's responses are as follows:


COMMENT #1: A commenter expressed concerns about a single-source contract eliminating all other suppliers and wanted to know how one supplier will be able to solve Montana's access issues.


RESPONSE #1: The department requires the winning bidder to meet certain specifications including delivery. Specifically, the bidder must be able to deliver the item within five days from receipt of the order. Prescribers who determine that a member needs the item sooner may opt to use a local durable medical equipment (DME) supplier to provide a rental. The department determined the combination of that approach ensures member access.


COMMENT #2: A commenter recommended the department use a different approach by allowing purchases and setting an acceptable fee for breast pumps, then all enrolled DME providers can participate.


RESPONSE #2: The department determined the competitive bid process would ensure member access at an acceptable rate of reimbursement.


COMMENT #3: Commenters expressed concern regarding those providers who supply breast-pump rentals and how this proposed rule will affect their breast-pump rentals in the future.


RESPONSE #3: Having a single source provider will not affect the current breast-pump rental process for Montana Medicaid. The requirements for breast-pump rentals will stay the same. The single source provider who is awarded the contract will be providing hospital grade double electric breast pumps for purchase.


COMMENT #4: Commenters expressed their concerns about the sole-source contract being awarded to an out-of-state bidder. Commenters recommended that the department rethink the decision made and support a Montana business rather than an out-of-state business to keep tax-payer dollars in the State of Montana.


RESPONSE #4: All suppliers had an opportunity to bid. The competitive bid process consisted of the State's Request for Proposal (RFP) with requirements and scope of services specifically outlined. The proposals were individually reviewed and scored. The contract was awarded based on the qualifications of the bidder and the ability to meet all requirements.




/s/ Brenda K. Elias                                       /s/ Sheila Hogan                                         

Brenda K. Elias, Attorney                            Sheila Hogan, Director

Rule Reviewer                                             Public Health and Human Services


Certified to the Secretary of State January 16, 2018.



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