LETTER: Medicare And Competitive Bidding
From: Hartford Courant
This is a wake-up call for anyone on or nearing the age of Medicare. As of July, Medicare will put into effect competitive bidding. This is what it will mean to you;
1. You will lose your right to chose you equipment provider. Many of the providers who win the bids are not local and some are out of state. If service is inadequate, there’s no alternative. The beneficiary’s choice doesn’t matter, and neither does the therapist’s — one can only go where CMS dictates.
2. Delays in obtaining medically required equipment and services; also delay in the maintenance of equipment.
3. Longer-than-necessary hospital stays due to trouble discharging patients to home-based care.
The quality of the equipment provided would be definitely affected. What is most upsetting is that the senators who are voting on the CMS competitive bidding are also exempt from adhering to its rules. They have their own premium policy.
If you feel that this is a good policy then do nothing; however, if you’d like to keep your right to choose your own provider, then call your legislator and tell him or her to put an end to CMS competitive bidding. If you don’t call then you have no right to complain come July.
Katherine W. Shea, Wolcott
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