WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 17, 2019)—Wednesday, Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) and Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa) introduced the Protecting Home Oxygen & Medical Equipment (HOME) Access Act of 2019 (HR 2771), legislation that would build upon last year’s interim final rule and ESRD/DMEPOS Final Rule. The new bill would:
- Make permanent the rural relief after 2020 (50/50 blended rate)
- Provide additional relief for non-rural, non-CB areas at a 75/25 blended rate (CB rates/unadjusted fee schedule rates)
- Eliminate the O2 budget neutrality requirement
"This legislation will help suppliers outside of bidding areas serve patients and communities that, in many cases, have a limited healthcare infrastructure," said Tom Ryan, president and CEO of the American Association for Homecare. "It also provides a common-sense fix to outdated oxygen reimbursement policies that have driven rates for stationary oxygen in rural areas even lower than bidding program rates."
"HME advocates did great work in raising awareness and building support for these measures in the previous Congressional session, and we need to build on that over the next few months to finish the job," added Ryan. "This is going to take an all-out press from every corner of our industry to make this bill a priority on Capitol Hill."
The legislation arrives just in time for HME leaders coming to Washington for AAHomecare's Legislative Conference to ask their Representatives to co-sponsor the bill. The organization will provide more details on how HME stakeholders can amplify their efforts with calls or emails shortly.
Visit aahomecare.org for more information.