LAS VEGAS – The American Association for Homecare’s Washington Update will happen on the middle day (Tuesday, March 11) of Medtrade Spring. Unlike previous years, the Spring version of the HME industry’s premiere trade show will take place Monday to Wednesday, instead of Tuesday to Thursday. Exact dates are March 10-12 in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.
AAHomecare President and CEO Tom Ryan will update members and attendees on the latest happenings, and much of what he has to say will depend on the actions of providers in the next four months.
In the months leading up to Medtrade Spring, AAHomecare officials are actively encouraging providers to vigorously share the message that “We need to stop Medicare’s disastrous bidding program for home medical equipment before it causes further hardship for patients and long-term damage to our nation’s health care infrastructure.”
Thanks to dedicated grassroots advocacy by HME providers, patients, and other supporters around the country, members of Congress are hearing about the serious failings of Medicare’s “competitive” bidding program.
As of December 1, 160 congressional representatives have signed on as cosponsors of H.R. 1717, bipartisan legislation that provides a market-based alternative to the current government price-setting program. More cosponsors are needed to help H.R. 1717 get the attention it deserves in the packed year-end congressional calendar.
AAHomecare is asking providers to take the following actions:
• Send a letter to your Senators and Representative online urging their support for the Market Pricing Program alternative to the bidding program. Feel free to edit the suggested language to reflect your own perspectives and experiences. Stories of patients having significant problems getting doctor-prescribed equipment and services on account of the bidding program are especially powerful in capturing the attention of congressional members and their staffs.
• Send the action.aahomecare.org link to friends, family, colleagues, customers, or others who may be interested in joining the fight to save homecare.
• Follow up your letter with a call to your Representative asking them to cosponsor H.R. 1717; you can find contact information here. Ask to speak to or leave a message for a staffer who handles healthcare-related issues.
• If you know someone who has had problems getting home medical equipment since the bidding program went into effect, encourage them to share their stories with People for Quality Care Medicare Complaint Hotline at 800-404-8702. PFQC has logged more than 2,700 calls just since July from patients who have had problems getting doctor-prescribed home medical equipment.
CLICK HERE to register for Medtrade Spring, held from March 10-12, 2014, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas. Early bird rates end on December 31, 2013.