The AASM continues to move forward with federal initiatives that will benefit our Medicare patients. These initiatives are vital for ensuring the future of the sleep medicine profession:
AASM Past Presidents, Alejandro D. Chediak, M.D. and Lawrence Epstein, M.D. recently met with federal legislators and their health policy staff to discuss our AASM proposal to improve the quality and bring continuity of care to Medicare patients. The proposal will establish a Stark exemption which would allow sleep medicine physicians to provide the diagnostic test and the therapeutic durable medical equipment to Medicare patients with sleep apnea.
AASM representatives met with more than 20 legislators and their staff, including Rep. Michael C. Burgess, MD, (R-TX-26) and Rep. Henry Waxman, (D-CA-33). The AASM plans to continue discussions this important proposal with legislators when Congress reconvenes in January.
Seniors Sleep 2014
Seniors Sleep 2014 is an initiative that aims to add sleep apnea screening to CMS’s Welcome to Medicare Initial Preventative Visit. The goal is to pass a federal bill. The AASM has been successful in finding a Senator to sponsor the bill and now we need your help to keep the momentum going. We request that you email us with the message “I pledge to Seniors Sleep” with your preferred contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org. With your pledge, you will help us by signing future online petitions and template letters to your legislators.
Why does your pledge matter? Simply, your legislators want to know that you are committed to your patients. Here is a quote from a Congressman’s top staffer: “How active will your doctors and others be in helping to raise awareness to gather co-sponsors for the legislation? Without a significant number of co-sponsors, it’s not likely that the legislation will move.” Submit your pledge today!
AASM members can support both initiatives by donating to the AASM PAC. The AASM PAC is used to elect candidates or help support federal incumbents who are sleep medicine-friendly. Contributions, no matter what the amount, go a long way in ensuring that the voice of sleep medicine continues to be heard and grow in the halls of Congress.