Integrity counts, right?


Paranormal Activity release You know what really irked me about AAHomecare’s initial plan to reform the Medicare oxygen benefit? Leslie Norwalk. When AAHomecare and the Council for Quality Respiratory Care (CQRC) unveiled their plan to revamp the oxygen benefit in January, the former CMS administrator was front and center, explaining the ins and outs. This was not the first time a Washington mercenary has gone to work for HME. A few years ago, AAHomecare hired former CMS Administrator Tom Scully as a consultant. Did Scully or Norwalk while at CMS ever do anything to benefit the HME industry? Did they ever say anything supportive? Maybe, but you’ll have to dig deep to find it. Yet one day they’re working against the industry, and the next day they’re working for it. Call me old fashion, but that doesn't seem right.

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Phoebe in Wonderland Mail Order Bride dvd The Last House on the Left movie buy American Splendor You really can’t blame providers for not embracing this first pass at overhauling oxygen. The CQRC is a powerhouse of industry expertise and leadership, but it’s also an alliance of manufacturers and national and regional HMEs like Pacific Pulmonary and Apria. Most independent HMEs don’t want this group of providers crafting policy for the entire industry. You can’t blame them for feeling that their best interests and Lincare’s might not be the same. Secondly, despite a lot of hard work crafting this plan, it lacked a key component: The fee schedule. That is sort of like building a car and forgetting to install an engine. It’s a tough sell.

— Mike Moran, Executive Editor

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Dear Mr. Moran,

Re.: Integrity counts, right? (February 13, 2009)

I think it is important to point out that organizations representing home oxygen patients, like the National Emphysema COPD Association, have also been very active partners and participants in the development of this proposal. The reform effort is not a single-handed initiative driven by one group; instead it is a collaboration of many leaders throughout the home oxygen community – the patients, the physicians, the therapists and the providers. The critical input and hard work of patient groups and oxygen stakeholders must not be ignored when discussing this initiative. To represent this collaboration any other way is simply not accurate.

It must also be noted that the very nature of the reform plan is to create a benefit that is patient-centered and designed to protect patients, like myself, who are dependent on the Medicare benefit. The proposed payment structure is built to reflect the actual care needs of patients; therefore, preserving patient access to home oxygen and the essential services that accompany this benefit.

Barbara Rogers
President & CEO
National Emphysema/COPD Association