Long-term care legislation could fuel HME business

Sunday, June 1, 2003

June 2, 2003

WASHINGTON - Congress is considering legislation that would pay for home attendants as alternatives to institutional care - a move that could fuel business for HMEs.

The Medicaid Community-based Attendant Services And Supports Act of 2003 (MiCASSA) would allow individuals to choose a level of attendant care, based on need, rather going into a nursing home or other institutional care facility.

For HME companies, the consequence of MiCASSA is plain: Fewer patients in facility-based care means more home care services, including medical equipment, say industry watchers.

The average nursing home costs $64,000 per person annually. With MiCASSA in place, states could save approximately $21,000 for every person transitioned from a facility, according to industry sources.

For more on this story, see the July issue of HME News.