In brief: Healthcare summit craze, local lobbying

Sunday, March 15, 2009

WASHINGTON - On the heels of a White House healthcare summit on March 6, the administration announced plans to hold similar regional summits across the country. The summits will take place in California, Iowa, Michigan, North Carolina and Vermont. HME associations in those states have submitted verbal and written requests to attend the summits to make sure the industry is part of discussions. In her request to Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas, Karyn Estrella, executive director of the New England Medical Equipment Dealers, stated: "We believe that this important discussion on healthcare reform must include the value of home care." Last week, the Michigan Home Health Association secured a seat at the summit in Dearborn, Mich., on March 12. Of the 150-plus lawmakers, health industry executives and "average Americans" who participated in the White House summit, only one represented home care: Val Halamandaris, president of the National Association for Home Care & Hospice.

PAMS plans local event

PITTSBURGH - The Pennsylvania Association of Medical Suppliers (PAMS) is trumpeting a "clear call to arms to repeal competitive bidding," stated Executive Director John Shirvinsky. PAMS will hold an HME Survival Summit on Medicare issues in Pittsburgh on April 6, during the Easter congressional recess. PAMS is inviting members of the Pennsylvania congressional delegation to speak, focusing on Western Pennsylvania since Pittsburgh is a Round 1 MSA. PAMS is also inviting disability and patient groups to participate. AAHomecare will assist PAMS and other state or regional associations with media support and materials as needed.

Golden Technologies lands TV role

OLD FORGE, Pa. - Look for an adjustable bed and lift/recline chair from Golden Technologies on the May 3 episode of the hit TV show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The episode features U.S. Army veteran Jeff Cooper, of Jamesville, N.C. Cooper, who is confined to a wheelchair due to multiple sclerosis and suffers the effects of Gulf War Syndrome, lives with his wife and two children in a double-wide trailer that is not designed to accommodate someone with a disability.

Documentation required

FARGO, N.D. - Noridian Administrative Services reminded providers not to dispense excess supplies for blood glucose test strips and lancets without documentation to support the need for additional supplies. This is the cause for one of the highest Comprehensive Error Rate Testing (CERT) program errors. Read the complete update: