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Legislative Updates/ DOTH 2020

30 Jan 2020 4:54 PM | Leah, Communications Committee Chair Lenz (Administrator)

Update on AACVPR Day on the Hill 2020 and IACPR Call to Action

Submitted by Susan Flack, Reimbursement/Legislative Committee Chair

Jan 27, 2020

Deb Anderson and Susan Flack will be representing IACPR as they attend AACVPR’s Day on the Hill (DOTH) Mar 2-4, 2020. The focus of our visits:

  • ·         In the House of Representatives: Gain support for H.R.4838 – SOS: Sustaining Outpatient Services Act. A section in the 2015 Budget Act directs a decrease in payment for outpatient programs that choose to expand or relocate away from a hospital campus. This creates a strong disincentive for hospitals to improve patient access at a time when Medicare is encouraging increased participation in our services. H.R.4838 would exempt certain hospital outpatient services (including cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation) from these payment reductions.
  • ·         In the Senate: We will inform our Senators of the House Bill, and garner support for a companion bill, expected to be introduced soon in the Senate. Senator Grassley is Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. In past DOTH appointments we have built a strong working relationship with Senator Grassley and his team. There may be a Medicare “Fix Bill” introduced in the spring. If Senator Grassley recognizes the significance of our bill, and it has strong support in the Senate, he could attach it to another bill, thereby increasing its chance of passage.

How can you help?

  • 1)      Do you know of a cardiac or pulmonary rehab program being affected by this location stipulation? Is your program wanting to relocate but unable to do so due to decreased reimbursement? Email me: susan.flack@unitypoint.org  Real-life examples from their home state make a strong impact with our elected officials.
  • 2)      Prior to our DOTH visit, please make sure your Congressman/woman knows about H.R.4838 and why it is important to their constituents. Several weeks ago you were encouraged to use the virtual lobbying tool on the AACVPR website to contact your representative. As of 1/27/20, 35 persons in Iowa have sent 57 messages to members in the House of Representatives. A breakdown:
  • ·         Congressman King (District 4) – 31 letters
  • ·         Congresswoman Axne (District 3) – 18 letters
  • ·         Congressman Loebsack (District 2) – 6 letters
  • ·         Congresswoman Finkenauer (District 1) – 2 letters

If you have not yet contacted your District Representative regarding H.R.4838, please do so as soon as possible. Detailed information about this issue, and contact information is available on the AACVPR website. The virtual tool is simple to use, but if you prefer you may call or fax their office. Our DOTH visits are much more productive if our Representatives are aware of our bill. Phone calls and faxes from patients and physicians are great as well. The more they receive the better!

  • 3)      Stay tuned for information regarding a companion Senate bill. When introduced, we will encourage use of a virtual correspondence tool for this as well.
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