November 10, 2012 in Letters, Opinion

Big savings in home health

 

Your Oct. 23 story about disabled patients benefiting from Medicare changes reminds us that the Medicare budget remains an important national issue. As a home health professional responsible for services in the Spokane area, I’m concerned that Medicare will undergo unnecessary cuts even though we can control costs without hurting benefits or quality of care.

We can improve care and save money by helping Medicare patients transition from the hospital to other care settings that are safe, clinically appropriate and have the lowest costs. A recent analysis of Medicare claims, available at ahhqi.org, showed that better care transitions could save up to $100 billion over 10 years and extend the life of Medicare’s Part A Trust Fund another two and a half years. This is way better than reducing benefits or payments to providers.

I know that one such care setting, home health, is an important part of the solution.

Older Washingtonians appreciate their Medicare and don’t want or need cuts to services or providers. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers has been a strong advocate of home health, and I hope she will support this approach as one way to save money for Medicare.

Kari Carbon

Spokane


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