Senators circulate bid relief letter

Deadline extended for House letter
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Friday, September 28, 2018

WASHINGTON – A Senate sign-on letter supporting additional relief from Medicare’s competitive bidding program was released this morning, a companion letter to one circulating in the House of Representatives which has garnered 79 signatures so far.

The Senate letter, spearheaded by Sens. John Thune, R-S.D, and Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., urges CMS to increase reimbursement rates in bid areas until the next round of the program is implemented and extend 50/50 blended reimbursement rates to all non-bid areas as part of its forthcoming final rule.

The Senate letter is only open through Thursday, Oct. 4, and stakeholders urge HME providers to immediately contact their senators and ask them to add their name to the letter.

The deadline for the House letter, spearheaded by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., has been extended beyond today’s deadline into next week, according to a bulletin from AAHomecare.

AAHomecare has identified lawmakers who have previously supported relief in non-bid areas as “top targets” for adding their names to the letter. They include the 49 senators who added their names to a sign-on letter urging bid relief in July 2017, and the 155 representatives who have co-sponsored H.R. 4229.

CMS is expected to publish a final rule in November.