Speak as one

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

The mood was all gloomy and somber and black;
For Congress had taken another great whack
At the business that helps keep the ill safe at home.
The DME owners just sat there and groaned.
"What can we do, to prevent these disasters?"
Asked each to the others, as if they were masters
Of their fates, which were tied to Medicare's strings--
"There's nothing to do, oh no, not one thing!"

"Bidding will come, who cares who it harms?"
"And standards and cuts, despite all our charms."
"Then more cuts and strictures, because we're all thieves."
"But we're not!" "Doesn't matter, it's what they believe."

"I could try to live with the changes they make,
But this delay and rescinding is what I can't take."
"Why is the info on bidding so slow?"
But none could respond, for they didn't know.

"Til one little voice came from out of the crowd,
It spoke quite softly, but its meaning was loud.
"Does nobody else see the entire view?
The problem's much bigger than all of us knew."

"Look for a moment beyond our own field--
By looking at all, the picture will yield
The reasons the center is in such a mess.
You have only to look, you don't have to guess."

"Congress enacted just too many laws,
And Medicare can't hack it; thus all the flaws.
They're blowing each mandate, just look at the facts--
Congress finally passed just too many acts."
"Prescription drug coverage is a mystery to all;
No one's enrolling, or answering the call.
Home health is reeling from the changes they've got.
It's not just Equipment; no, really, it's not."

"Medicaid services are taking a blow--
Ask Vermont or Virginia or Colorado.
Consultants are handling some aspects of law--
Just look at those standards, a joke to us all."

"Those policy wonks at CMS place
Have finally discovered they're losing the race.
They're running about like that chicken we know--
With no head and no plan, and nowhere to go."

"As long as we focus on DME just;
We will lose all our battles, as surely we must;
The time has come to speak with one voice--
All health fields together; we don't have a choice."

In numbers, there's strength, says the old adage true,
(And there's really not that much else we can do
To force those in Congress to re-think this right);
But speaking as one--we can win this fight!"

When the voice finished speaking, the silence was vast
As each pondered the truth that the speaker had cast
Into their midst, like a prophet of old--
And they knew that his words had the weight of pure gold.

--Connie Hess, ATS, HealthKeeperz, Pembroke, N.C.