The National Association for the Support of Long-Term Care (NASL) recently hosted Capitol Hill visits for therapy providers across the country. Infinity Rehab leaders JoLynn Munro, Division President, and Michelle Jabczynski, Director of Compliance and Strategy, traveled to Washington D.C. for the visits. Their goal was to “fight the cut” and advocate against the proposed 8% cut to the 2021 physical fee schedule resulting from E&M changes by CMS.
Why Infinity Rehab wants to “fight the cut”
Infinity Rehab and other therapy providers want to advocate against these cuts for several reasons. One of the primary issues is how these cuts will affect underserved areas. If the cuts are adopted, certain providers will experience significant, unjustified decreases in their Medicare reimbursement. Such reductions would impede access to essential services for seniors and individuals with disabilities.
Additionally, JoLynn and Michelle advocated for telehealth services. The end goal is to expand telehealth services, ultimately leading to a rise in quality care and cost savings. Therapy providers are urged to co-sponsor the bipartisan, bicameral Creating Opportunities Now and Effective Care Technologies (CONNECT) for Health Act of 2019.
Support from Congressman Kurt Schrader
The highlight of the trip was meeting with Congressman Kurt Schrader. Congressman Schrader is a vocal therapy advocate. With the help of the NASL, an advocacy letter to fight the cut was prepared with the goal of having several congressman and provider specialty organizations sign it before sending to CMS. Schrader signed the letter.
All in all, both JoLynn and Michelle agreed the trip was worthwhile and are confident their advocacy efforts will pay off.
“It’s an honor to advocate on behalf of our patients and our profession to make a difference,” noted Michelle. “It’s through this advocacy that we truly see change. Part of advocacy is telling patient stories, which truly makes it impactful and makes a difference. “
The trip was also noteworthy in that it brought together several therapy providers, some of whom are competitors, uniting for one cause.
“As an industry, we are more collaborative and less protective of our space than I’ve seen in a long time,” stated JoLynn. “We are trying to work on these issues together. There is strength in numbers.”