I saw an article in last week's newspaper that frightened me! An administrator for CMS, Jonathan Blum, said that in order to keep Medicare solvent they would have to further reduce reimbursements. I find that he is not alone in that attitude!
What really blows my mind is that no one ever wishes to look into why and how the money is disappearing so quickly. It is “fraud and abuse” which must be addressed! Whenever I bring that up though, I am told they cannot make any changes in the system.
No matter how low they reduce the reimbursements, the same thieves will continue milking the system. We have to get them out! I am strongly recommending that you, as active DME/HME providers, please join me in making the following requests.
1.) We have started and are working in the correct direction for licensure. The Accreditation Program is the beginning. But, to date, it has no teeth. To participate in Medicare or Medicaid you must have accreditation (or a license), and when found in fault, that can either be revoked or suspended.
2.) There has to be standards for everything provided. When we review the different retail prices for wheelchairs or walkers, we immediately are aware there are no standards. For a pharmacist, the standards can be found in the US Pharmacopeia or the National Formulary. Where do we look for DME?
When this came up, I was told it would be too costly and take up too many man-hours to accomplish providing standards. I say it would save them so much money and keep out many of the dishonest people who use Medicare to steal. They will then discover where to find the money! It has always been available, but too many crooks find it SO EASY to steal!
The best way to get this achieved is by working together with one another and supporting the state and national associations. They can and will deliver your message. We can show CMS and Medicare where to find the money!