The 2015 AAHomecare Legislative Conference wrapped up Thursday. The centerpiece of the event was the presentation of the Legislative Advocate Award to industry icon Mal Mixon. Mixon is Chairman of the Board of Invacare Corporation, based in Elyria, Ohio.
VGM’s executive team (Van Miller, Jim Walsh, Mike Mallaro, Mike Kloos, John Gallagher, Mark Higley and Tom Powers) were on the Hill to continue discussions with many key members of Congress, who seem to be singing a different tune. They are much more aware and attentive to our DMEPOS issues this session.
Timing of the event was crucial as during the event, two key members of Congress presented legislation to improve both the audit and competitive bid programs.
- Congressman Tom Price’s (R-GA) office is working to introduce the MPP Pilot program. The MPP (Market Pricing Program) would be a true auction system by replacing the “median bid” format with a “clearing price” format. This would be a long term fix to the current competitive bid program.
- Congresswoman Blackburn (R-TN) introduced H.R. 2437. This legislation will require prior authorization for high dollar durable medical equipment. This legislation would exempt pre- and post-payment audits for DMEPOS items that have already been approved through a prior authorization process. These pre-approved items could then only be subject to audits for fraud and abuse purposes. The intention of this to reduce the number of intrusive audits on DMEPOS suppliers.
Both of these pieces of legislation would create a more secure outlook into the future for independent medical suppliers. We are still maintaining our focus on the audits and the 2016 nationwide rollout of competitive bidding. We’ll continue to provide you with ways to take action and make sure the HME voice is heard.