House Sign-on Letter Calls for Oxygen Template

The bi-partisan Congressional sign-on letter asks lawmakers to join an effort urging CMS to adopt a clear, standardized template letter for home oxygen equipment and supplies.

HME providers and other HME stakeholders are being asked to support a Congressional sign-on letter that could help improve patient access to home oxygen equipment and services.

The letter, launched in the House by Reps. Terri Sewell (D-Ala.) and Larry Bucshon (R-Ind.), calls on CMS to streamline medical necessity documentation required for home oxygen therapy. Click here to download a PDF of the Dear Colleague letter from Reps. Sewell and Bucshon, as well as the House sign-on letter.

“We ask that CMS use the opportunity of expanding the current National Coverage Determination for oxygen to establish a clear set of criteria to support medical necessity and instruct the contractors to rely solely on the Standard Written Order as they are doing during the pandemic or to include with that order a completed template to support medical necessity without having to review individual clinician’s medical records,” the letter to CMS reads. “Based on the CERT data, medical necessity is not an issue, but how clinicians write their medical records notes may be problematic. Rather than place suppliers and beneficiaries in the middle, CMS should create clear rules and forms that will facilitate beneficiary access while also protecting against fraud and abusive practices.”

How to Help

The deadline for signatures is July 29. HME stakeholders are encouraged to e-mail their lawmakers staff member that handles health care policy to ask that the Representative sign the sign-on letter to CMS.

“It is important that you reach out today to ask your member of Congress to sign this letter as this letter is circulating around Congress for only 10 days,” a statement from VGM Government Relations read. “Please reach out today.”

To help providers do that, VGM Government Relations has provided an online tool to message their members of Congress, asking them to support this letter.

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