WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 30, 2016)—We’re just two days away from the second phase of bidding-derived cuts for rural and non-bid area suppliers. With the House currently out of session, there’s no chance of action before July 1.
Nonetheless, we are still engaged on Capitol Hill to pass rural relief legislation in both the Senate and House. The fact that the new cuts are going into effect has not diminished the willingness of our champions to continue to advocate for relief.
While the Senate successfully passed S.2736 last week, influential parties in the House remain strongly opposed to the Medicaid pay-for in the Senate bill. At this point, AAHomecare, along with member company government relations staffers and other HME stakeholder groups are working to bring the Senate and House together to find a solution that will pass both chambers.
Our industry’s task remains unchanged—we need to pass rural relief legislation, and the July 1 cuts that CMS released last week underscore the urgent need for a legislative fix.
Simply put, HME stakeholders need to continue to raise the volume on the issue to a point that moves the Senate and House to work together and find a way to either overcome the resistance to the pay-for from key House members, or find another solution that pauses these cuts until further study on their effects on beneficiaries can be properly assessed.
We understand that many of you may be staggered by finally seeing the actual numbers of the second phase of rate cuts in print, and disappointed that we’re currently at an impasse in Congress.
However, the severity of the cuts and their impending arrival may ultimately help as we make our case on Capitol Hill. There is nothing like a crisis to help spur legislators to action; we need to make sure that we let the House and Senate know that these cuts are taking rural providers and patients to the precipice of disaster.
The House returns from recess on July 5 and the Senate is back a day later. We ask that you continue to press your representatives for a solution to this impending crisis for providers and patients alike upon their return.
Visit aahomecare.org for more information.