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Stakeholders, largely in wait mode, keep close eye on DC 

February 5, 2021Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

WASHINGTON – With a new administration, a new Congress and new leadership at CMS and HHS still taking shape, there won’t be a lot of action on HME priorities for the next few months, say AAHomecare officials.  Among those priorities is a final rule expected to include a host of DME-related provisions.  “The new administration is reviewing all regulations and still getting staff on board,” said Jay Witter, senior vice president...

aahomecare, DMEPOS final rule, Jay Witter, lobbying, sequestration cuts, Tom Ryan


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Medtrade Show Daily

Stakeholders seek five-year bid delay for non-invasive vents

October 22, 2019Liz Beaulieu, Editor

ATLANTA - A bill could be introduced literally any day now to pump the brakes on CMS's plans to include non-invasive ventilation in its competitive bidding program, AAHomecare's Jay Witter told Medtrade attendees on Tuesday morning.The bill would delay the inclusion of non-invasive vents in the program for five years—or two rounds of bidding—and would require the creation of an expert panel to create a “good medical policy” for the product category, said Witter, senior vice...

aahomecare, competitive bidding, Jay Witter, Medtrade 2019


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Bid relief update: Stakeholders target ESRD rule, as pressure mounts

May 4, 2018Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

WASHINGTON - Industry stakeholders say an upcoming rule could be a potential vehicle for changes to Medicare's competitive bidding program.Last week, the Office of Management and Budget indicated that the proposed rule, CY 2019 Changes to the End-Stage Renal Disease Prospective Payment System, is under review.“We talk to the Health and Human Services folks all the time and they have assured us they are working on all of our issues,” said Jay Witter, senior vice president of public policy...

aahomecare, competitive bidding, IFR, Jay Witter


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Stakeholders prepare for bid-relief bill to drop

October 13, 2017Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

WASHINGTON - Industry stakeholders have begun the task of shoring up support in anticipation of a bill that would provide some relief from the competitive bid program.Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., has released draft language of the legislation, which would extend a retroactive delay of a second round of reimbursement cuts in non-bid areas from Jan. 1, 2017, to Jan. 1, 2019. Per the legislation, reimbursement for that period would be based on reimbursement on Jan. 1, 2016.“McMorris Rodgers...

aahomecare, Jay Witter, John Gallagher, Tom Ryan, vgm group


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Legislative update: One letter down, one more to go

June 16, 2017Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

WATERLOO, Iowa - Fresh on the heels of a successful letter in the House of Representatives seeking competitive bidding relief, industry stakeholders say they now have their sights on a Senate version.“We hope to have Sens. John Thune, R-S.D., and Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D, come up with a letter in the next couple of weeks,” John Gallagher, vice president of government relations for The VGM Group, told attendees at the Heartland Conference last week. “(These letters) give HHS Secretary...

Cara Bachenheimer, Heartland 2017, Jay Witter, John Gallagher


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AAH's Ryan: 'We are so close'

May 26, 2017Liz Beaulieu, Editor

WASHINGTON - The timing of AAHomecare's Washington Legislative Conference couldn't have been better, Tom Ryan told attendees on Wednesday, the day before their Capitol Hill meetings.The day before, on Tuesday, a “Dear Colleague” letter began circulating on the Hill appealing to Tom Price, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, and Seema Verma, CMS administrator, to intervene and provide relief from Medicare's competitive bidding program.“There's no score or procedure...

Jay Witter, Tom Ryan, Washington Legislative Conference


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Bid relief 'in the mix'

November 18, 2016Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

WASHINGTON - Amid the chaos in Washington, D.C., industry stakeholders have been crisscrossing the Hill to ensure relief from Medicare's competitive bidding program doesn't get lost in the shuffle.Members of AAHomecare, The VGM Group and others made at least 16 visits in two days last week, and also have spoken with the office of House Speaker Paul Ryan.“The feedback from Speaker Ryan's staff is that it's in the mix, but they can't give us a specific vehicle or any clarity to the issue,”...

aahomecare, bid relief, Cara Bachenheimer, Jay Witter, The VGM Group, Tom Ryan


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Trump, man of mystery

November 11, 2016Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

WASHINGTON - Industry stakeholders are looking ahead at what a Trump presidency could mean for HME.“If it was anyone other than Donald Trump, I would be able to tell you a lot more,” said Cara Bachenheimer, senior vice president of government relations for Invacare. “He's not a traditional Republican. It's unclear what his congressional agenda is and what his proposals really mean.”What is clear is that Trump, a businessman with no political experience, struck a chord with...

aahomecare, Cara Bachenheimer, Donald Trump, Jay Witter, John Gallagher, presidential election, Tom Ryan


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Industry pulls out all stops to push bill

June 17, 2016Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

WASHINGTON - Friday afternoon was a nail-biter for the HME industry as a bill that would delay a second phase of Medicare reimbursement cuts moved through the “hotline” process in the Senate.An unknown Republican Senate office on Friday put a hold on S. 2736, leading industry and state associations to blast urgent messages to members directing them to reach out to their senators.“We need a wave of immediate support,” VGM said in a bulletin. “The clock is literally ticking...

aahomecare, Cara Bachenheimer, competitive bidding, Invacare, Jay Witter, S. 2736


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Reboot: Band of lobbyists

May 26, 2015Liz Beaulieu, Editor

WASHINGTON - AAHomecare has resurrected its Legislative Council to pool the industry's lobbying efforts.AAHomecare's Jay Witter points out, for a small industry, quite a few HME companies have lobbyists on the Hill—not only Invacare, Pride Mobility Products and Philips Respironics, but also Hill-Rom, Cardinal Health, Smith & Nephew and others—and a major goal of the council is to get them all in the same room on a regular basis.“It's a good way to get all of the D.C. assets together,...

aahomecare, Jay Witter


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