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Kidney Care Community Applauds National Taxpayers Union's Endorsement of Medicare Reforms to Extend Patient Private Health Insurance Coverage; Calls Proposal 'Common Sense Coverage Reform'
Date:4/28/2008

In Letter to Senate Finance Committee, Taxpayers Union Says Extending Private Coverage for Dialysis Patients from 30 to 60 Months is Key to Improving Care and Generating Taxpayer Savings

WASHINGTON, April 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Kidney Care Partners (KCP) - an alliance of patient advocates, dialysis professionals, care providers and manufacturers working together to improve quality of care for individuals with kidney disease and kidney failure - applauded the National Taxpayers Union's (NTU's) April 24 letter to the Senate Finance Committee supporting Medicare policy changes that would extend the period of private insurance coverage for beneficiaries suffering from kidney failure. NTU called these reforms (historically referred to as Medicare Secondary Payer or MSP) an example of a "Common Sense Coverage Reform."

In a nine-page submission to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT), Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Members of the Committee addressing Medicare issues ranging from funding oversight and accountability measures to systemic changes, the NTU called out Patient Coverage Extension (PCE) for patients on dialysis as a "small but sensible step" Congress can undertake to control ballooning Medicare costs and deliver savings to taxpayers, thereby helping avoid unnecessary tax hikes or government bailouts.

Dialysis patients are the only Medicare beneficiaries forced to switch from their private health insurance to Medicare after 30 months of treatment, regardless of their age. Doing so can lead to unnecessary confusion and a lack of treatment options for patients, as well as higher costs for taxpayers covering the rising costs of Medicare. The Bush Administration has recently proposed extending private coverage for ESRD patients from 30 to 60 months.

"Kidney Care Partners is encouraged by the National Taxpayers Union's support of extending private coverage as a reasonable and achievable goal for
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SOURCE Kidney Care Partners
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