Moving the HME Industry Forward

Legislative/Advocacy

AAHomecare in Action – Atlanta On Horizon

October 13, 2014

ATLANTA – Kick off your Tuesday at Medtrade at the AAHomecare Washington Update—always one of the most talked about sessions at the show. This year, Tom Ryan (president), Jay Witter (senior vice president of Public Policy), Kim Brummett (vice president of Regulatory Affairs) and Beth Ludwick (senior director of Communications) will discuss the critical issues affecting the home care community.

In this session, attendees can hear where our industry stands on Capitol Hill, in negotiations with CMS, and where we’re headed as an industry—straight from the largest national group representing home care—and fighting on its behalf in Washington, DC.

Topics will include the latest from CMS on the expansion of bidding rates outside of CBAs, and what’s next for rates in rural and frontier states. The round two recompete is right around the corner, so the team will discuss the potential timing of the rollout, and how you can help by supporting the binding bids legislation, H.R. 4920.

Attendees will also learn about the current state of audit reform and the new HME Audit Key, an industry-wide initiative designed to survey and quantify the impact of audits on providers. There is buzz on Capitol Hill about audit reform, and this session is a great opportunity to catch up on all of AAHomecare’s audit reform strategies and legislation—including the Audit Improvement and Reform Act (AIR), HR 5083.

Attendees will also learn about a number of ways that they can engage with the association, including an update on the Save My Medical Supplies consumer communications campaign. Learn from the experts about which tactics and strategies will expand support for homecare on Capitol Hill. The AAHomecare Washington Update is sponsored by HME Business.

Stand Up for Homecare Reception On Tuesday, Oct 21
The Stand Up for Homecare reception is taking place Oct 21 at the Metro Atlanta Chamber, concurrent to Medtrade. Tickets are available online or at the door. Click here to register or donate.

AAHomecare thanks its many Stand Up for Homecare sponsors for their generous support of the homecare community. When you attend or donate to Stand Up for Homecare, you are endorsing AAHomecare efforts to promote a positive image of the HME industry, raise public awareness of home care’s many benefits, and support consumer advocacy groups.

Thank you to the organizations who Stand Up for Homecare!
Diamond
Invacare Corporation, Medtrade

Silver
Apria, Brightree, Brown & Fortunato, CAIRE, Drive Medical, Hoveround, The MED Group, MK Battery, MSD, Philips Respironics, Pride Mobility, ResMed, Shield Healthcare, The VGM Group

Industry Supporters
HME Business, HME News, HomeCare, Mobility Management, Respiratory & Sleep Management, SeniorCare Products

Advocates
Barnes Healthcare Services, BLACKBURN’S, Laurel Medical Supplies, McKesson Patient Care Solutions, Mediware CPR+ Fastrack, Smith & Nephew, Spectrum Medical, Inc., The Roho Group, Wright & Filippis

United Spinal Backs Binding Bids Legislation

Working with consumer groups to build support for legislative initiatives is one of AAHomecare’s key roles, and the association has recently been working with a number of consumer advocacy groups, including United Spinal to build consumer support for the binding bid legislation, H.R. 4920, introduced by Reps Pat Tiberi (R-Ohio) and John Larson (D-Conn). This legislation will make all bids binding and require proof of licensure for the next rounds of bidding. It addresses a major flaw in the program and deters speculative bidding without generating a cost.

Just as they did for H.R. 1717, consumer groups strongly support improving the bidding program and H.R. 4920. AAHomecare thanks United Spinal for spearheading a consumer group sign-on letter that garnered 25 supporting organizations to endorse HR 4920. This letter and the support letter for HR 1717 show that consumers agree that there need to be major changes to the competitive bidding program.

Meeting With CMS
Last week, AAHomecare met with Laurence Wilson and other key staff of CMS to discuss the ESRD proposed rule and its impact on the home care sector. Specifically, AAHomecare discussed concerns with CMS’ proposals to apply competitive bidding rates to non-competitive bidding areas and bundling payments on a limited basis in the next round of bidding. 

These concerns were detailed in the Association’s comments, which were submitted on September 2, 2014.  The discussions were positive, and CMS staff said that they would review the proposals. AAHomecare will continue to work with CMS to address concerns with the proposed rule before it’s finalized in late 2014.

 “We’ve had a number of meetings with CMS in the past few months, and we’re taking full advantage of these opportunities to be heard. CMS has the power to directly impact our members, and so we’re working hard to keep an open door for communication to them,” said Tom Ryan, AAHomecare president and CEO.