Powerful “Dear Colleague” letter highlights concerns over rural rate cuts – Your action is needed now

Posted on in HME Government Issues

Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) has composed a “Dear Colleague” letter asking for rural rollout relief. Representing rural Colorado, the Congressman’s letter, addressed to leaders of the House Committee on Ways and Means, calls attention to the severe consequences of suddenly reduced payment rates.

In his letter he writes, “There are already larger barriers to access for home health services in rural parts of the country, and decreasing compensation for the services required to deliver equipment to this area reduces the likelihood that providers will continue to operate there.”

He also calls attention to the following:

  • The 10 percent regional single payment amount will not cover the cost of providing services
  • CMS’ phase-in timeline is unrealistic, allows no time for business to adjust their models
  • Two reports are set to be released over the course of 2016 that will provide more information, allowing officials to determine if the program should be continued
  • HME companies are preemptively laying off employees in anticipation of the reduction
  • Rural constituents and HME providers are gravely concerned about the potential impact the cuts will have on Part B beneficiaries

The letter is specifically asking the Ways and Means Committee chairman and ranking member to evaluate all available legislative remedies to prevent the reimbursement cuts in 2016 and “ensure access to DMEPOS for individuals and families in rural areas.”

What does this mean to us?

The actions we have taken to communicate our issues to Congress are working. Now it is time to sprint into action again to encourage congressional members to sign on to Rep. Tipton’s letter.

By signing this letter, we are again asking members to be supportive of the home medical equipment industry and the people they serve. The letter, loaded with signatures, will head to the Ways and Means Committee as a powerful display of importance of the issue.

Please contact your member of Congress now. The deadline is close of business day on Nov. 16. Don’t waste any time; it takes just a minute. Click here to send a message to your legislator today!