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Home Oxygen Leaders Warn That Competitive Bidding Program Reductions Combined with Other Pending and Proposed Cuts Are 'Unsustainable and Unpredictable'
Date:3/20/2008

Medicare Cuts Already Slated for 2009 & 2010 Will Top 20%

Changes Threaten Beneficiary Services, Potentially Thousands of

Service-Oriented Jobs

WASHINGTON, March 20 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Leaders in the home oxygen community today expressed concern over Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' (CMS) announcement about projected program reductions tied to Medicare's competitive bidding program for the home oxygen therapy benefit.

The Council for Quality Respiratory Care (CQRC) Chairman Peter Kelly, reacting to CMS' competitive bidding announcement, said that today's news underscores the importance of "proceeding with caution" with regard to Medicare policy changes related to home oxygen therapy. "Changes stemming from new competitive bidding policies are even more dramatic than anticipated, and the breadth of those changes should cause policymakers - and all of us who care for Medicare's sickest beneficiaries - to stop and assess carefully the effect these changes will have on the health and well being of elderly patients."

Citing the wide variation in bids from community to community, Kelly said that "initial results prove that what works in one community cannot be assumed to work in another." He also warned that "the magnitude of current and pending Medicare cuts will make the oxygen benefit unsustainable and the impact on beneficiaries dangerously unpredictable. At a time when government is working to stimulate quality improvement and keep patients in their homes and out of expensive institutional settings, these budget-driven policies effectively eliminate all incentives for quality improvement and discourage preventive care."

The home oxygen community is currently bracing for a time of great uncertainty for patients and providers due to sweeping changes due to take place in 2008 and 2009 and required by the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 and the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003,
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SOURCE The Council for Quality Respiratory Care
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Related medicine news :

1. Bi-Partisan Members of U.S. House of Representatives Formally Oppose Funding Reductions to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
2. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Johnny Isakson for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
3. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator George Voinovich for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
4. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Barbara Mikulski for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
5. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
6. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Bernard Sanders for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
7. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Kit Bond for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
8. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Tim Johnson for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
9. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Ken Salazar for Joining Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
10. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Pat Roberts for Leading Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
11. Home Oxygen Community Applauds Senator Blanche Lincoln for Leading Bi-Partisan Effort to Formally Oppose Proposed Cuts to Medicares Home Oxygen Benefit
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