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1999 Ron Paul Chapter 116

Allow Hi-Tech Supervision of Home Health Agency Branch Offices

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18 November 1999


1999 Ron Paul 116:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I wish to take this opportunity to express my agreement with language contained in the report accompanying H.R. 3075, which was included in the Omnibus Appropriations bill, encouraging the Secretary of Health and Human Services to allow home health agencies to use technology to supervise their branch offices. This language also calls on the government to allow home health agencies to determine the adequate level of on-site supervision of their branch offices based on quality outcomes. I need not remind my colleagues that Congress is expecting home health agencies to operate efficiently under greatly reduced Interim Payment System (IPS) and Prospective Payment System (PPS) reimbursement. It is therefore necessary that home health agencies be allowed the flexibility to establish and serve large service areas by utilizing cost efficient branch offices.

1999 Ron Paul 116:2
My district includes many rural areas which are experiencing access problems due to the Health Care Financing Administration’s (HCFA’s) home health branch office policies affecting time/distance limitations and on-site supervision requirements. In many cases, these requirements do not recognize technology advances. In order to ensure that senior citizens in rural areas have access to quality home care, it is vital that any regulations on home health care branch offices promulgated by the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) evaluate the offices by quality of outcome instead of arbitrary administration requirements and restrictions.

1999 Ron Paul 116:3
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I reiterate my support for the report language accompanying H.R. 3075 urging the use of outcome instead of arbitrary requirements and restrictions, to determine a home health care agency’s ability to establish and supervise branch offices.
Note:

1999 Ron Paul 116:1 cost efficient branch offices probably should be hyphenated: cost-efficient branch offices.

1999 Ron Paul 116:2 technology advances perhaps should be technological advances.

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