A new national poll of nearly 2,000 registered voters over age 65 sponsored by Bring The Vote Home (BTVH) found that a large majority of U.S. seniors oppose a Medicare policy requiring a government contractor to approve claims for physician-prescribed home healthcare services, which are often recommended by doctors for elderly patients following hospitalization to ensure a smooth transition from the acute setting to the home.
According to a press release from BTVH, these results follow the recent implementation of a “pre-claim review” demonstration by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), which will impose burdensome documentation requirements on home health agencies and on referring physicians that home health leaders warn could lead to care delays and increased healthcare costs.
The national poll found that American seniors do not favor government interference in healthcare and believe that healthcare costs will rise as a result.
The results also show 83% of U.S. seniors agree that a doctor should be able to prescribe medications and services they choose for their patients without the government interfering.
Other key findings of the recent BTVH poll include:
- Four-out-of-five (80%) of seniors think it is likely that requiring a government contractor to approve claims for Medicare home healthcare services will result in delayed care for patients in need of prompt care.
- 77% of seniors think requiring a government contractor to approve care will increase the cost of Medicare.
- 75% of seniors think requiring a government contractor to approve care will increase out-of- pocket costs.
- 76% of seniors most trust healthcare professionals (primary care physicians and nurses) to handle issues related to healthcare (compared to 6% trusting government).