MPP: 'It's time to be all in'

Thursday, February 2, 2012

WASHINGTON - In a make or break effort to bring home medical equipment providers to the Hill next week to stump for an alternative to competitive bidding, AAHomecare is making its Washington Legislative Conference virtually free.

"It's time to be all in," said Joel Marx, chairman of AAHomecare and president of Cleveland-based Medical Service Co. "If we don't get it done now, we're not going to get it done."

AAHomecare announced last week that it would use reserve funds to waive the $245 registration fee for AAHomecare members, and reduce the $355 fee for non-members to $100. Refunds will be available to those who have already paid.

"The goal is to have a turnout like we've never seen before," said Tyler Wilson, president and CEO of AAHomecare. "We've got to push our message up Capitol Hill and push it in person."

Ideally, stakeholders would like to see the market pricing program or MPP attached to a final bill on the tax cut and "doc fix" due in February.

"That's our opportunity to push MPP over the finish line," said Marx.

The further into Round 2 of competitive bidding the industry gets, the harder it will be to turn around the program, acknowledged Wilson.

"People are invested in it--they spend time and resources to submit bids," he said. "They don't like the program but they realize they've got to do what they've got to do."