Many people with Parkinson’s need physical, occupational, and/or speech-language therapy as they offer some of the only treatments available to maintain quality of life and independence. As you may recall, in December, Congress passed a three-month extension of the Medicare therapy caps exceptions process that allows people to receive medically necessary therapy over the $1,920 caps. While Congress usually passes a year-long extension of the exceptions process, there was significant movement toward Medicare reform legislation that would include a permanent repeal of the therapy caps.
That movement has continued in the opening months of 2014, but unfortunately recently released Medicare reform legislation does not include a permanent repeal of the Medicare therapy caps – and the current exceptions process is set to expire at the end of March. PAN supports a permanent repeal of the therapy caps because a constant cycle of short-term extensions creates great uncertainty for patients and providers and is inadequate to ensure access to need therapy services. While we are disappointed that permanent repeal is not included in the current draft, we still have a great opportunity to ensure that it is in the final legislation.
While it’s uncertain how Congress will proceed – either with legislation that includes permanent repeal or another extension of the exceptions process – our community cannot afford to hold back from the debate. Join us in this effort to permanently repeal the Medicare therapy caps and contact your Members of Congress today.
Tell your Members that people with Parkinson’s should never have to worry whether or not Medicare will cover their medically necessary physical, occupational, and speech-language therapy services.