Advocacy can come in many forms. One of which is sharing examples of how existing policy limits your ability to provide the best care for your patients. As we progress through the 116th Congress, please consider sharing with your PPS lobbyist examples of how current healthcare laws impact or impede the care you can provide. As a PPS Key Contact, you will be invited to share some of those stories with your legislators so that they can understand how the legislation they are presented with would impact their constituents—you and your patients.
Last Congress the CONNECT for Health Act (H.R.2556/S.1016) was a bill that provided a tailored approach to expanding coverage for care provided to Medicare beneficiaries through telehealth. As you know, a few provisions of that bill became law. As a result, the sponsors of the legislation are working on more ideas to include in the version of the legislation that will be introduced this Congress. To that end, the Co-chairs of the Congressional Telehealth Caucus released a Request of Information that asks for input from stakeholders as they seek to craft a revised, comprehensive approach to legislation that will provide for increased federal payment for care provided via telehealth. The response is due April 1st.
ADVOCACY OPPORTUNITY 1: URGENT
Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org by COB Thursday March 28th examples of how you use, or would use, telehealth in a way that would align with the following policy objectives that have been identified by the Congressional Telehealth Caucus:
1. Expand access to telehealth, especially in rural or otherwise underserved communities;
2. Improve patient outcomes or ease the day-to-day patient experience;
3. Encourage easier and expanded use of existing telehealth technologies; and
4. Reduce healthcare costs for both patients and federal programs, including Medicare.
To further support PPS’ lobbying efforts, we are preparing a survey to determine how PPS members are currently utilizing and billing for telehealth for cash pay and with private payers. The questions will allow practitioners to report how they are providing care via telehealth and also inform us about which private payers are reimbursing for care provided utilizing telehealth and the rates PPS members are receiving for that care. We also hope to get a sense of how many PPS members don’t currently use telehealth but are interested in doing so.
ADVOCACY OPPORTUNITY 2:
In the next few weeks you will receive a survey that asks more detailed questions about how you are utilizing and billing for telehealth and what rates you are receiving for that care. Please fill out the survey so that we will be armed with data to support our lobbying efforts to increase opportunities for physical therapists to provide care via telehealth.
Other Legislative Priorities
We are working with the previous legislative sponsors of our advocacy priorities to get those bills reintroduced in this the 116th Congress. We will let you know when those bills are reintroduced so that you may begin to ask your legislators for their support. In the meantime, make sure you have reached out and shared the Section’s Legislative and Advocacy priorities with them.
Thank you for your continued advocacy!
For information on PPS’s legislative priorities and activities,
visit the Advocacy section at www.ppsapta.org