H.R. 1717 GAINS TWO MORE CO-SPONSORS

H.R. 1717, a bill that would replace competitive bidding with the industry’s market pricing program, continues to draw support.

This week, two more lawmakers co-sponsored the legislation, which was introduced by Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.)into the House as the Medicare DMEPOS Market Pricing Program Act of 2013. This brings the total number of supports for the bill to 168 co-sponsors.

The two new backers are Reps. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) and Bradley Schneider (D-Ill.).

As the industry continues to push for support for H.R. 1717, HME advocates and their congressional allies are also working to attach MPP provisions to the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR; aka “the doc fix”) legislation.

In the run-up to Superbowl Sunday, American Association for Homecare President Tom Ryan said that while “the rare Hail Mary touchdown pass that puts a team over the top on the last drive” that the SGR legislation represents would be ideal, “the reality is that we’re in a slog, fighting yard by yard through four quarters.” Ryan added that “the most prepared team will win.”

“I know our defense has been beaten up by the business challenges of bidding, the onslaught of audits, and the flashy PR offense CMS has used to tout the ‘successes’ of a broken program,” Ryan wrote in an update to his members. “But we need to put our defense back out there to square off with congressional members who are looking for $120 billion to pay for the SGR fix to say, ‘No way! You’re not getting any more yards from this team. We have had enough!’”

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