New MBS item expands eligibility for TAVI

To date, the procedure has been funded only for high-risk patients but the new rules could triple the numbers likely to benefit

Transcatheter aortic valve implantation is now covered by the MBS for patients with severe aortic stenosis who are at intermediate risk of death and morbidity from open heart surgery.

The minimally invasive procedure is already publicly funded for those at high risk of surgical complications, but the new Medicare item 38514 will expand eligibility to thousands more patients each year, cardiologists say.

The item descriptor states that any service claimed must include all intraoperative diagnostic imaging provided