Introduction of the Medicare Home Infusion Site of Care Act of 2015by Representative Patrick J. Tiberi
Posted on 2015-01-28
in the house of representatives
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Mr. TIBERI. Mr. Speaker, the Medicare Fee-for-Service program stands
virtually alone among health care payers in the United States in not
fully recognizing the clinical and cost benefits of providing infusion
therapy to patients in their homes. Infusion therapy is fully covered
by Medicare in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, hospital
outpatient departments, and physician offices, but coverage in
patients' homes is very limited. As a result, Medicare beneficiaries in
need of infusion therapy usually receive their treatments in health
care facilities rather than in their homes, which is the setting that
is the most desirable, convenient, and by far the most cost-effective.
This is unfortunate and unnecessary. In the private sector, the accepted standard of care and practice for over 30 years is to provide infusion therapy at home where medically indicated and when requested by the attending physician. Ironically, patients who have access to this benefit under their private plans lose this coverage when they enroll in Medicare.
Medicare's lack of coverage for infusion therapy in the home setting can lead to substantial patient and family lifestyle disruptions and costs. Because Medicare only covers infusion services in institutional and limited outpatient settings, the beneficiary either has to travel to a health care facility to receive infusion treatments, sometimes multiple times a day, or remain in a facility for the duration of the therapy.
Today, Representative Eliot Engel and I are introducing The Medicare Home Infusion Site of Care Act of 2015 so patients can receive the same infusion treatments that they currently receive in facility-based environments in their homes at a lower cost to Medicare. Mr. Speaker, I urge all of my colleagues to support our bill to give patients better quality care at lower costs.