Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sen. Baucus Touts Services Provided in the Home and Community

U.S. Senator Max Baucus (D-Mont.) released his healthcare reform plan today, saying the need for reform is so great we have to act now. In his introduction to the plan, Baucus stated the need for healthcare policies that “shift the focus from institutional care to services provided in the home and community” in order to improve quality of care and reduce costs.

However, he also proposed in his plan that competitive bidding is an anti-fraud program and is a sound payment methodology for home medical equipment and services in Medicare. The American Association for Homecare disagrees with this statement.

The Association is on record as noting that the competitive bidding program for home medical equipment, which was reformed and delayed by MIPPA, is a price-setting mechanism – not an anti-fraud measure. The Association believes that the federal government should not arbitrarily limit the number of homecare providers who furnish care to seniors and people with disabilities. The number of providers should be determined by the marketplace.

In response to the healthcare plan, Tyler Wilson, president and CEO of AAHomecare, said, “The underlying rationale for competitive bidding completely misrepresents the nature of home medical equipment and related services that are integral to homecare. Competitive bidding would reduce quality of care and access to homecare for millions of seniors and people with disabilities.”

To learn more about AAHomecare’s response to the Senator’s plan, visit the AAHomecare newsroom at

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