Spring's gotcha!


On Saturday, I cracked open a window, cleaned out my car and stowed my winter boots in the closet. 

This morning, I donned mittens while I chipped snow and ice off of my car (in Maine, we keep the ice scrapers at hand year round).

Ahh … spring.

Last week, the industry got whacked with its own wet blanket: Two reports issued by the OIG and the GAO on the competitive bidding program.

The first found that CMS generally complied with its own bidding rules and said that CMS should continue to follow its own rules.

I am not so sure the industry would wholeheartedly agree with that, particularly with regard to little things like financial transparency.

“There are bankrupt companies who have won bids,” AAHomecare’s Tom Ryan pointed out.

The GAO report on the program’s impact on providers and beneficiaries was even more disconcerting. The GAO is supposed to function as the eyes and ears of Congress. Unfortunately, it looks as though the GAO looked through a pair of rose colored glasses supplied by—CMS.

“It was junk in, junk out,” said VGM’s John Gallagher. 

For an industry hoping the reports would back up their concerns, it was a double disappointment.

“This doesn’t give me a distinct 'gotcha!' to take to the Hill," said Ryan.

I’ll be attending the AAHomecare Legislative Conference in May and it should interesting to see what sort of conversations will take place in those hallowed halls on the Hill.

By the way, this is my 6th year attending the event—an HME News record, I think.