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At-Home Care Businesses Urge President Obama to Repeal Medicare Program that Cuts Access to Homecare
Date:6/27/2011

d:

  • Difficulty finding a local equipment or service provider;
  • Delays in obtaining medically required equipment and services;
  • Longer than necessary hospital stays due to trouble discharging patients to home-based care;
  • Far fewer choices for patients when selecting equipment or providers;
  • Reduced quality; and
  • Confusing or incorrect information provided by Medicare.

In a letter dated June 20, the American Association for Homecare called on President Obama to support repeal of the bidding program. The letter states:  

"The bid program encourages 'suicide bidding' by using economic coercion to force providers to submit unsustainable bids necessary to win a contract in the hopes of staying in business in the short term. People who require home medical equipment are being harmed because services are being curtailed due to unsustainable pricing and they are not able to receive the equipment they need….

"To protect Medicare patients who receive care in their homes, AAHomecare urges you to support H.R. 1041; properly evaluate the concerns of the 244 economists, auction experts, and researchers with the competitive bidding program; and work with Congress to review and re-evaluate the DME benefit in Medicare."

Recently, 244 leading economists (including four Nobel laureates), computer scientists, and engineers with expertise in the theory and practice of auctions expressed their concerns about Medicare's bidding design for home medical equipment. In a June 17 letter to President Obama, the 244 experts noted that, "the use of non-binding bids together with setting the price equal to the median of the winning bids provi
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SOURCE American Association for Homecare
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