More than 260 hospice and palliative care advocates representing the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) – the oldest and largest nonprofit membership organization representing hospice and palliative care programs and professionals in the United States – were on Capitol Hill yesterday as part of the Hospice Action Network’s annual Advocacy Intensive to meet with lawmakers and staff to reinforce the value of the Medicare Hospice Benefit to the 1.43 million beneficiaries it serves annually and their families. Attendees from 44 states across the country spoke with 300 lawmaker offices about legislation supported by NHPCO to improve the delivery of hospice and palliative care.
Legislation supported by NHPCO and advocated for during yesterday’s Hill visits includes:
· Rural Access to Hospice Act (S. 980/H.R. 1828)
· Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act (PCHETA) (S. 693/H.R. 1676)
· Patient Choice & Quality Care Act (S. 1334/H.R. 2797)
· Safe Disposal of Unused Medication Act (H.R. 5041)
NHPCO advocates were honored to hear from bipartisan, hospice champions while visiting Capitol Hill yesterday including Senator Debbie Stabenow (MI), Senator Shelly Moore Capito (WV), Representative Vern Buchanan (FL), Representative Earl Blumenauer (OR) and Representative Tom Reed (NY).
NHPCO also launched a new advocacy campaign – My Hospice – to reinforce the value of the Medicare hospice benefit among policy and healthcare decision makers to foster a policy environment that will support patient access to high quality, comprehensive hospice and palliative care. As Medicare’s first coordinated care model, hospice is one of the few sectors that demonstrates how healthcare can – and should – work at its best for its patients, offering a successful model for expanding access to person-centered, integrated care to all patients with serious, advanced and life-limiting illness, and their caregivers.
The campaign aims to demonstrate what hospice means to each unique individual and family it serves. Through the My Hospice campaign, NHPCO will highlight how critically important hospice and palliative care are to Americans across the country, while educating policymakers that hospice is an integrated care program that works and a high-quality benefit that matters.
To learn more about the My Hospice campaign, please visit MyHospiceCampaign.org.
To learn more about NHPCO’s Hospice Action Network, please visit HospiceActionNetwork.org.