The House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee, chaired by Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL), today held its third roundtable discussion focused on how Congress and the Administration can take steps to cut red tape in the Medicare program to better serve patients.
This roundtable was a chance for lawmakers to talk with advocates and post-acute care medical professionals – including representatives from long-term care hospitals, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, skilled nursing facilities, home health agencies, hospice and palliative care providers, and beneficiary advocate groups. Participants shared where they believe red tape needs to be cut in Medicare so healthcare providers can focus on what’s most important: providing quality patient care.
House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) kicked off the roundtable, saying:
“While we have larger policy discussions and reforms for Medicare, there are smaller and smart steps we can take to improve patient care and reduce health care costs. We believe there is a big opportunity here to improve patient care and reduce health care costs by alleviating post-acute care providers from unnecessary administrative burdens that get in the way.”
Chairman Roskam added:
“What we’re trying to do out of this roundtable discussion and the input we’ve received as a Committee is, with specificity, getting a sense of what are the things we can do either to change a statute, or what are the things we can urge CMS to do to change a promulgated rule or a policy that can lift a burden.”
Throughout the meeting, panelists identified multiple statutory and regulatory issues that currently distract from being able to focus on care, outcomes, and efficiency.
Some of the many proposals raised in the discussion included:
- Examining outdated regulations. Panelists mentioned a number of rules that need to be updated, which currently take time away from providers that could be better spent focusing on patients;
- Minimizing compliance requirements. Many of these rules put egregious regulatory strain on providers, prolonging the time it takes for them to provide quality and affordable care;
- Reducing paperwork. Patients and providers want to be able to focus on patient outcomes, not paperwork; and
- Streamlining processes. Panelists suggested finding ways for providers and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to work together, not against each other, in helping patients receive the care they deserve.
Chairman Roskam closed the roundtable by committing to continue working together to improve health care for patients everywhere:
“We are really interested in what you all are saying, we recognize the nature of the challenges that you’ve articulated, and we are really interested in working with you through your organizations to try and come up with remedies that make sense. We’re all in this together.”
CLICK HERE to learn about the Health Subcommittee’s roundtable in April with hospitals.
CLICK HERE to learn about the Health Subcommittee’s roundtable in March with provider groups.