'10 miles' of ask-fors? That's what the HME industry is up against?!?!


I spoke with Seth Johnson earlier today for an update on efforts to delay elimination of the first-month purchase option for standard power wheelchairs. The short story: The delay wasn't included in the "doc fix" that members of Congress passed earlier this week (Read more in Monday's HME NewsWire).

When I asked Johnson why the industry's provision, which is bipartisan and budget neutral, wasn't included in the "doc fix," he said:

“They indicated that there was a list 10 miles long of other provisions that various groups were trying to have added to the doc fix to make various changes. The only additions to the doc fix that were allowed were Medicare extenders that had been previously extended earlier in the year, like the therapy caps. The process they had to follow to get it passed, based on what they heard from the rank and file, would not allow for other provisions to be included.”

10 miles of ask-fors? That's what the HME industry is up against? Anytime you think the industry's spinning its wheels trying to get the elimination of the purchase option delayed or competitive bidding repealed, remember this.

That doesn't mean stakeholders should throw up their hands. They just need to find a way to break out from the pack, something Johnson and others are working overtime to do. When members of Congress told him why they couldn't include the delay of the elimination of the purchase option in the "doc fix," he said:

"We indicated back to them, are any of those other provisions full paid for, like ours? I'm sure many of them were not. Do any of them preserve jobs and access to medically necessary equipment that allows seniors to continue to remain active and independent in their homes and communities?"

Liz Beaulieu