By: Beth Cox Hollingsworth, VGM Marketing
With champion social media efforts and news coverage, including an article in the Huffington Post, a coalition of organizations that represent prosthetic limb communities has successfully gained 100,000 signatures on the We the People website, to prevent cuts to Medicare coverage for lower limb prostheses.
The proposed Local Coverage Determination, issued by DME MAC contractors, would set lower limb amputees back 25 years, denying them access to the technology and prosthetic care needed to promote independence.
“The prosthetic technology that many amputees rely on today would not be covered under the new proposal,” said Dennis Clark, president of VGM’s Orthotic and Prosthetic Group of America.
Having reached the administration’s threshold of 100,000 signatures in 20 days, the petition now joins the ranks of just under 300 others to have reached the threshold in the last four years. Topics ranging from a call to deport Justin Bieber to student loan forgiveness have demanded the attention of the president’s administration, with only one issue, gun control following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, receiving a personal response from President Obama.
The White House recently re-affirmed its commitment to responding to the We the People platform, following a backlog of 20 petitions (or 2.5 million people) that raised the average response time to 344 days. The administration has committed to correcting the backlog problem by providing a response in the form of an email to petition signers within 60 days wherever possible.
According to We the People website, White House staff holds a regular meeting with representatives of the various government agencies who will determine which policy office in the White House or a federal agency will respond to the petition.
As we wait for the response, due around Oct. 17, visit www.SaveProsthetics.org to complete step two of their request, which is submitting a statement to Stacy Brennan, M.D., at Medicare.