Monday, March 15, 2010

Reps. Altmire and Shuler, Sen. Klobuchar Talk about Benefits of HME

Several members of Congress spoke at the AAHomecare Washington Legislative Conference, March 1-3. All spoke about the benefits and cost-effectiveness of homecare and its importance in our healthcare system.

Senator Klobuchar addresses the WLC 2010 crowd
“Homecare is a major part of the solution in terms of cost-effectiveness,” said Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) during AAHomecare Washington Legislative Conference. And with explosive growth in our older population, “homecare is going to be vital,” she said. Sen. Klobuchar has also been instrumental in reducing the size of the proposed tax on medical devices, which was included in the Senate’s health reform proposal.

Congressman Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) spoke about his own grandfather’s requirement for oxygen after suffering a stroke. Shuler said, “His quality of life escalated unbelievably.” Shuler has been a steady champion for HME concerns, focusing especially on small-business implications. He was introduced at the conference by Heath Sutton, owner of Mountaineer Oxygen Services in Waynesville, N.C., whom Shuler credits with helping him to better understand the services required for Medicare beneficiaries who receive home medical equipment.

Similarly, Congressman Altmire recommended that HME providers remind lawmakers that HME is cost-effective, high-quality, and is preferred by patients. Altmire said his awareness about HME issues is due largely to the tireless efforts of Georgie Blackburn, of BLACKBURN’S, an HME provider in Western Pennsylvania.

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