Consumers log 1,100 calls

Monday, June 30, 2008

WASHINGTON--Legislators asked and on May 22 they received.

During a call-in and Capitol Hill visits in April, legislators told providers that they wanted to hear from consumers and clinicians that complex rehab should be excluded from national competitive bidding. During another call-in May 22, they heard from about 1,100 consumers and clinicians.

“In my view, this is unprecedented,” said Paul Bergantino, an NCART board member who helped organize the call-in. “The consumers and clinicians really rallied behind us.”

The May call-in, hosted by The MED Group and Sunrise Medical, was sponsored by a whopping 20 consumer and clinician groups.

During the call-in, participants lobbied for H.R. 2231 and S. 2931, two bills that would exclude complex rehab from NCB.

Bergantino said the 1,100 calls from consumers and clinicians “are even more valuable” than the 4,500 calls that providers and manufacturers made to legislators during the April call-in.

“These were literally calls made by single people vs. whole companies making calls,” he said. “There’s no doubt we were heard even louder this time.”