Sending Office: Honorable Lynn Jenkins
The Rural Access to Hospice Act of 2017
We ask for your support for H.R. 1828, the Rural Access to Hospice Act of 2017. This important legislation will correct a barrier in the Medicare system, which grants more access to more Americans and saves the Medicare system money.
When patients enroll in hospice, they select a physician or nurse practitioner to serve as their attending physician. The attending physician collaborates with that hospice center in the development of the care plan and is kept informed of the patient’s
care. Typically, the attending physician is reimbursed for these services under Medicare Part B. However, Rural Health Centers (RHCs) and Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) do not bill under Medicare Part B. Instead, they are paid a fixed, all-inclusive
payment for all services to Medicare beneficiaries. However, due to statutory oversight, hospice care is not included in this all-inclusive payment. The result is that some patients cannot have their primary care physician serve as their attending physician
while they are in hospice. This presents another problem – some people then simply do not enroll in hospice.
H.R. 1828 will allow RHCs and FQHCs to receive payment for serving as the hospice-attending physician. Undoubtedly, this will grant access to hospice care for more Americans living in rural parts of our country. Many Americans wish to receive care in the
comfortable setting of a hospice care center, in communication with their doctor of many years. This bill will allow those people to do that and help them get quality, affordable care closer to home.
We ask for your support for this important legislation. If you have questions or would like to cosponsor, please email Baruch Humble in Rep. Jenkins’ office at
Baruch.Humble@mail.house.gov, or Elizabeth Stower in Rep. Kind’s office at
Elizabeth.Stower@mail.house.gov. Thank you for your support.
Lynn Jenkins, CPA Ron Kind
Member of Congress Member of Congress
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