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I'm just the cleanup crew

I'm just the cleanup crew

This one's for you, dear providers who aren't on twitter.

AAHomecare included an item in its Wednesday in Washington bulletin this week on updated data for HME's share of total Medicare spending. Turns out it's down to 1.11% in 2016 from 1.22% in 2015.

The association pointed out that even way back in 2006, HME's share of total Medicare spending was a paltry 1.6%.

The general theme here: HME spending is what they call in Washington, D.C., “budget dust.” Am I right?

AAHomecare further pointed out that while overall Medicare spending continues to climb (and let's face it, that trend will likely continue—I'm talking about you baby boomers), HME spending has decreased 7.5% between 2012 and 2016.

I posted the above graph to twitter, and a telling exchange between providers ensued.

Here it is:

Jason Jones: When I'm working AR, I start with higher dollar amounts and worry less about those who owe very little. Why is it that Medicare hammers the 1% and ignores the rest? What do I know—I'm just a college dropout from Alabama.

Woody O'Neal: Why would they even bother?

Jamie Long: Any meeting with Congress should consist of pulling out this graph, slapping it down on the table, and walking out of the room.

Gary Sheehan: I have always used this one and it does help. “See that tiny line at the bottom, the only one going down, that's us!”

Rusty Church: Marcus Lemonis would come into a DME business and say, “The product costs you this much, driver costs this, gas costs this, and Medicare pays you this? Are you crazy? Why are you in this business? Who created this crazy (bleep) model?”

Gary Sheehan: The other item that bears mentioning: The small line on the bottom holds the key for controlling the out-of-control growth of all the other lines.

Rusty Church: Well said.

Jamie Long: I wish there was a way to show that the growth would have been in those other areas if DME had not been gutted over the last decade. I bet that graph would look vastly different.

Thanks providers for writing this blog for me. Sure, I cleaned up some of your language and added some grammar here and there, but I couldn't have said it any better.


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