Nurses rally on Capitol Hill to protect home health care

Nurses rally on Capitol Hill to protect home health care

July 22, 2011 05:32 PM

PRESS RELEASE

For additional information:

Barbara D. Woolley
National Association for Home Care & Hospice
(202) 547-7424
bdw@nahc.org

WHAT:

Home health nurses will gather in DC to be the voice of the thousands of patients served by the home care community across the US who would be directly affected by proposed cuts in Medicare/Medicaid. These patients are so sick that they cannot leave home without assistance and suffer from numerous complex medical issues. Home health agencies cannot tolerate any further cuts and co-payments that, if implemented, would have adverse effects on patients. The result would be Medicare having to pay for more expensive levels of care, such as hospitals and nursing homes stays.

WHO:

Nurses from 12 states will rally on Capitol Hill along with representatives of the Home Healthcare Nurses Association, the National Association for Home Care & Hospice and the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. Nurses from Arkansas, California, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Michigan, North Carolina, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island will be in attendance, which represents more than 50% of US healthcare expenditures. Representatives of Congress from states listed above have also been invited.

VISUALS:

Nurses will have photos of their homebound patients to give a visual representation that those who will be affected by co-payments aren’t nameless or faceless.

WHEN:

Wed, July 27, 2011

11:00 a.m. EDT

WHERE:

2103 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, D.C.

WHY:

Cost-effective home health and hospice services save money in the long run and should be encouraged, not cut, as a way to reduce the deficit.  Home health and hospice already took disproportionate cuts in the health care reform legislation and should not be cut again. Home health co-pays would disproportionately impact poor and sick seniors, shift seniors to more costly settings and increase Medicare and Medicaid costs. Co-pays were repealed in 1972 and remain unpopular today.

Over the next few years, $12 billion in Medicare cuts to the industry are already planned even though home care and hospice is more cost effective, saving billions in Medicare expenditures. In 2009, the average home care visit cost $135 per day versus the average hospital visit which cost $1,800 a day.  Preventive home health care saves Medicare and Medicaid billions of dollars per year.

ABOUT:

The National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) is a nonprofit organization that represents the nation’s 33,000 home care and hospice organizations. NAHC also advocates for the more than two million nurses, therapists, aides and other caregivers employed by such organizations to provide in-home services each year to some 10 million Americans who are infirm, chronically ill, disabled and dying. Along with its advocacy, NAHC is committed to excellence in every respect and provides information to help its members maintain the highest quality of care. To learn more about NAHC, visit www.nahc.org.

 

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