Navigation Links
President Obama & Congress Act to Ensure Access to Compassionate End-of-Life Care for Patients & Families
Date:2/18/2009

One-Year Moratorium on Cuts in Medicare Hospice Funding Signed Into Law

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Feb. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The nation's hospice community claimed a significant victory this week after President Barack Obama signed a bill (H.R. 1 - The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) into law that includes a one-year moratorium on cuts in Medicare funding for the more than 4,700 hospice programs nationwide. The action ensures that access to quality and compassionate end-of-life care will be maintained for the more than 1.4 million patients and their family caregivers who seek hospice each year.

Over the past year, the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, the Alliance for Care at the End of Life, and hospice advocates from across the country have been working to overturn a 2008 regulation issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), which eliminates a key component of the Medicare hospice reimbursement formula known as the budget neutrality adjustment factor (BNAF).

The phased funding cut would have taken $135 million away from quality and compassionate end-of-life care in fiscal year 2009, and has already jeopardized the survival of many hospice programs, particularly smaller, more rural ones. Approximately 3,000 hospice provider jobs were threatened to be cut this year, with deeper job losses expected in fiscal year 2010 as the funding cut enters its second year.

The effort to halt the hospice rate cuts has been underway since the Bush Administration announced its intention to eliminate the BNAF in its FY09 budget

NHPCO and its partners within the hospice community have been engaged in an aggressive grassroots program, mobilizing patients and their families, professionals, physicians, nurses, home health aides, spiritual and bereavement counselors, and volunteers, that has resulted in tens of thousands of calls, emails and letters being sent to elected officials in the House and Senate. As a result, a bipartisan group of lawmakers worked together to have the hospice provision included in the economic stimulus package approved by Congress, and signed into law by President Obama.

"From the start, our efforts have been about ensuring access to high-quality and compassionate end-of-life care for Americans coping with life-limiting illness. We thank our supporters at the grassroots level and in Congress for securing a one-year moratorium on cuts in hospice funding. It's important that we continue to build upon the momentum that we have now to ensure that patient access is protected in future years by permanently overturning these devastating rate cuts," said J. Donald Schumacher, president and CEO of NHPCO.

Despite strong, bipartisan opposition in Congress, CMS began implementation of the final rule on October 1, 2008. "If allowed to move forward in FY10, this misguided rule will slash hospice payments by approximately $2.18 billion in the first five years, despite the fact that hospice has been found to be a cost saver for the Medicare program," Schumacher noted.

A 2007 independent Duke University study found that hospice reduced Medicare costs by an average of $2,300 per hospice patient, amounting to a total of more than $2 billion in savings in a single year.

With the one-year moratorium in place, NHPCO, the Alliance for Care at the End of Life, and hospice advocates will now turn their attention to working with the new administration and Congress on permanently overturning the CMS rule to eliminate the BNAF.

NHPCO leadership are meeting with CMS on February 19 to discuss the subsequent process necessary to address the one-year moratorium.

    Contact:
    Sara Perkins
    Ph: 703-837-3135
    sperkins@nhpco.org
    or
    Jon Radulovic
    703-837-3139
    Jradulovic@nhpco.org

NHPCO is the oldest and largest nonprofit membership organization representing hospice and palliative care programs and professionals in the United States. NHPCO's mission is to lead and mobilize social change for improved care at the end of life.

www.nhpco.org

The Alliance for Care at the End of Life is a 501(c) (4) organization created by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) to provide a more aggressive and comprehensive advocacy voice to serve the entire field and, ultimately, one of America's most vulnerable populations - those nearing the end of life.

www.afceol.org


'/>"/>
SOURCE National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. S.C. BlueCross Creates Corporate Planning Unit, Promotes Davis to Vice President
2. MassMutual Promotes Debra Palermino to Senior Vice President of Human Resources
3. Sodexho, Inc. Announces Patrick E. Connolly as Market President & COO
4. Pioneer Surgical Technology Hires Vice President of New Business Development
5. PRA International Adds Dr. Susan Stansfield as Executive Vice President
6. AOA President Calls on Congress to Reauthorize SCHIP and Take Action to Ensure Health Care Coverage for All Americans
7. Presidential Candidates Address Health, Financial Security at AARPs Life@50+
8. STERIS Corporation Board of Directors Names Walter M. Rosebrough Jr. President and Chief Executive Officer
9. Resonant Medical Appoints New Vice President of Global Sales
10. Karen Vigil Named Senior Vice President and Chief Executive Officer, Blue Shield of Californias Individual, Small Group, and Government Business Unit
11. John B. Buse, MD, PhD of Chapel Hill, NC, Elected American Diabetes Association President, Medicine & Science
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... finds that youth violence is declining—and at noteworthy rates. Between 2002 and 2014, ... young people involved in violence in the United States. The study, Trends ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... 21, 2017 , ... Young Asset Protection, an insurance provider ... the greater Pittsburgh metropolitan region, is joining forces with the local chapter of ... children. , Variety the Children’s Charity is a national organization dedicated to empowering, ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... , ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... it’s been named Agency of Record (AOR) for Theravent, Inc. , the ... snoring. Theravent’s parent company, Foundation Consumer Healthcare, is now working to expand distribution ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... ... Alive for Wellness is a group of clinical professionals and ... Alive team uses advanced behavioral sciences treatment modalities to accomplish their goals. ... struggle is based on 10 modalities of treatment that include: , ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... , ... April 21, 2017 ... ... promoting quality-based imaging practices, is seeking candidates to serve on its Accreditation ... imaging. , “RadSite’s ultimate mission is improving image quality and reducing ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/18/2017)... , April 18, 2017 Research ... of the United States Molecular Imaging Equipment and Radiopharmaceuticals Market, ... ... in molecular imaging equipment revenues as well as growth in ... This will provide value to market participants that design and ...
(Date:4/18/2017)... , April 18, 2017 Recursion Pharmaceuticals ... science with machine learning techniques to discover treatments for ... Yolanda Chong as vice president of biology. ... & Johnson in Belgium , where ... focused on applying high-dimensional biological approaches to the small ...
(Date:4/18/2017)... , April 18, 2017 Research and ... Market 2017-2021" report to their offering. ... The global antiviral drugs market to grow at a ... report, Global Antiviral Drugs Market 2017-2021, has been prepared based on ... covers the market landscape and its growth prospects over the coming ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: