Medicare has announced that on January 1, 2016 they will apply the same Competitive Bid Pricing intended for standard wheelchair accessories to specialized accessories used with Complex Rehab wheelchairs. Complex Rehab wheelchairs consist of medically necessary and individually configured power and manual wheelchairs used by individuals with significant disabilities and chronic medical conditions. Medicare’s action will result in inappropriate and unsustainable payment reductions ranging from 20% to over 40% which will severely reduce (or outright eliminate) access to Complex Rehab wheelchair systems.
The Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation is working to stop these cuts that will make it even more difficult to get the life-sustaining equipment used by individuals with paralysis. To help carry this important message to Washington, they’ve made it possible for individuals to send a postcard to their Members of Congress. Each postcard includes a personal photo and message about your wheelchair, your life, and what your equipment enables you to do. You can create your own postcard at http://www.itsaboutfreedom.org/.
The Reeve Foundation asks people to include a request for passage of H.R. 3229/S.2196 in the personal message portion of the postcard. These bills provide a legislative technical correction to clarify that CMS cannot apply Medicare competitive bid pricing to accessories used with Complex Rehab wheelchairs and thereby protect access for people with disabilities. These postcards will deliver a unified message to Congress emphasizing the importance of them preventing cuts from being implemented by passing legislation before the end of the year.
For more information on the issue, visit http://cqrcengage.com/access2crt/HR3229.