Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Urgent-Call Your State Representative and Urge Them to Oppose Page 121 of the Rider Packet Regarding Acute Therapy Services!

We just got word out of Austin that there has been a rider (amendment) proposed to the Texas House budget bill that could result in SIGNIFICANT cuts to funding for Medicaid therapy in the State of Texas!!  We need your help to oppose this amendment!  Below is a link to find your representative’s contact info along with some sample language that you can use in your call.  Please email me back and let me know that you called.  Feel free to give my contact number if they need any further information.
Please call your State Representatives now and tell them to oppose this amendment! It is extremely urgent as the vote is Tuesday (today!) 
Estimated savings to Medicaid in the Senate version, which could decimate home care therapy, was put at $200 million. Call your House Representatives immediately to oppose this rider and keep it out of the House budget! 
Here is a link to find your representative:
Sample Message for Caregivers of Children Who Could Be Impacted:
My name is __________, and I live in your district.  My child receives the following therapy services: ______________________________.  Without these services or limited access my child would suffer in the following ways: ______________________________________________________.
Sample Message for Providers:

Hello, my name is _______________ and I'm calling to ask Representative _______________ to oppose a proposed amendment to the House budget. This amendment would have a devastating impact on therapy services for children with special needs.

This is Rep. Greg Bonnen's Rider related to Acute Therapy Services, on page 121 of the rider packet.

This Rider would amount to a 44% cut to therapy services. The estimated savings of $200 million to the Medicaid program is completely unrealistic and unsustainable for acute care therapy services.

These drastic reductions in therapy reimbursement will limit access to medically-necessary therapy services for children with disabilities.

These reductions are not consistent with the HHSC Consolidated Budget that shows therapy providers are being appropriately reimbursed under the current rate structure.

The study upon which this amendment is based is extremely flawed. It was not shared with the public prior to budget decisions and therefore no public input was received.

HHSC continues to look at rate cuts to contain growth in spending, rather than appropriate policy changes to ensure appropriate utilization.
Dr. Greg Bonnen, the representative who introduced this rider covers state district 24 which is right here in the Houston area.  His district covers portions of League City, Friendswood, Dickinson and Galveston.  If you are in these areas we urge you to contact his office and oppose this rider as the representatives are often more responsive to the constituents from their own districts.