DearColleague.us

Letter

Sending Office: Honorable Diane Black
Sent By:
Hillary.Lassiter@mail.house.gov

Dear Colleague:

We urge you to cosponsor H.R. 3181, the Medicare Choices Empowerment and Protection Act. This bill would provide a small financial incentive for Medicare beneficiaries to voluntarily create a digital advance medical directive, which
can be modified or cancelled at any time.

We believe individuals should be given the tools to help them make their own health care choices when it comes to end-of-life care.  While the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently took the first step to encourage physicians to have more
end-of-life discussions with their patients, we still believe Medicare beneficiaries should be educated about advance care plans. This step will help to ensure that patients have better, more productive discussions with their family members and health care
providers. 

According to a 2006 Pew Research Center study, 70 percent of Americans have thought about their end-of-life health care preferences, but only one-third have completed an advance directive. Advance directives are voluntary, legal documents that enable individuals
to provide clear guidance to their medical providers and family members about their health care decisions should they become incapable of speaking for themselves.
Advance care planning empowers Americans by protecting patients’ health care choices and reducing confusion and anxiety for their family members.

The Medicare Choices Empowerment and Protection Act would:

  • Allow beneficiaries to voluntarily certify to CMS that they have created an advance directive at any time. Advance directives would be created through and maintained by outside organizations certified by CMS.
  • Hold CMS and outside groups maintaining the advance directives to the highest standards for privacy and security protection as well as system functionality.
  • Allow the beneficiary to modify or terminate the advance directive at any time.
  • Maintain existing state law precedent in governing advance directives.

We hope you will join us in support of this important legislation to empower Medicare patients and protect their health care choices.  For more information or to become a cosponsor, please contact Hillary Lassiter (Black) at
Hillary.Lassiter@mail.house.gov, Isaac Loeb (Welch) at
Isaac.Loeb@mail.house.gov, Charlotte Pineda (Collins) at
Charlotte.Pineda@mail.house.gov, or Casey Badmington (Thompson) at
Casey.Badmington@mail.house.gov.
 

Supporting Organizations: National Right to Life Committee, Third Way, American Nurses Association, The American College of Emergency Physicians, MyDirectives.com, The Coalition to Transform Advanced Care, National Hospice and Palliative
Care Organization, Zen Hospice, Center for Practical Bioethics, Altarium Institute, Bipartisan Policy Center, Compassus, Get Real Health, American Heart Association, American Stroke Association, Healthwise, Cerner, National Partnership for Hospice Innovation,
and Coordinated Care Health Network.

Sincerely,
 

            Diane Black                                                                                                     Peter Welch
            Member of Congress                                                                                        Member of Congress

 

 

            Chris Collins                                                                                                    Mike Thompson
            Member of Congress                                                                                        Member of Congress

Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information: HealthCare

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