[tabi] Fwd: You're Invited!--Low Vision Devices and Medicare--Joint ACB/AFB Teleseminar Sponsored by HumanWare: March 12, 3pm ET

  • From: Lynn Evans <austin.evans60@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 6 Mar 2014 21:51:48 -0500

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Begin forwarded message:

> From: HumanWare <marcom@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> Date: March 6, 2014 at 11:10:36 AM EST
> To: austin.evans60@xxxxxxxxx
> Subject: You're Invited!--Low Vision Devices and  Medicare--Joint ACB/AFB 
> Teleseminar Sponsored by HumanWare: March 12,  3pm ET
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> Low Vision Devices and Medicare
> Join ACB/AFB Teleseminar Sponsored by HumanWare: March 12, 3pm ET
> Making it Clearer: Medicare Coverage of Low Vision Devices Pending 
> Legislation, Policy Implications, and What You Can Do About It
> You are invited to participate in a free national teleseminar jointly hosted 
> by ACB and AFB to learn about recent activities in the U.S. Congress to 
> promote Medicare coverage of low vision devices. We are grateful to 
> HumanWare, www.HumanWare.com, a global leader in low vision and other 
> assistive technologies, for their gracious support which is making this 
> teleseminar possible.
> There is no need to register or RSVP for this free teleseminar. To join the 
> call, simply dial the toll-free number below at least ten minutes prior to 
> the March 12, 3pm Eastern, start time. Dial:
> 1-866-939-3921
> Tell the operator that you are joining the "low vision devices" call.
> We look forward to a lively discussion with all who are interested in 
> advancing the cause of Medicare coverage for low vision devices and other 
> assistive technologies. During the teleseminar, topics to be covered will 
> include pending legislation in Congress, the array of policy implications of 
> a permanent change in the Medicare program, and how advocates can participate 
> in the policy process.
> A Free Teleseminar Jointly Hosted by:
> The American Foundation for the Blind and
> The American Council of the Blind
> Wed., March 12, 3:00 p.m., Eastern .
> Background
> For decades, the vision loss community has been advocating for Medicare's 
> coverage of assistive technologies, particularly low vision devices. 
> Currently, Medicare will not pay for any device that happens to use a lens, 
> regardless of whether such device incorporates any other features. The 
> Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the federal agency 
> responsible for the management of Medicare, has ruled that devices, such as 
> low vision devices, that use a lens are excluded from coverage just as are 
> eye glasses or contact lenses except in very narrow circumstances.
> Now, for the first time, federal legislation would begin to change this 
> unacceptable national policy by establishing a nationwide Medicare 
> demonstration project to evaluate the fiscal impact of a permanent change in 
> Medicare coverage to pay for low vision devices. The legislation, H.R. 3749, 
> introduced by Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), would 
> initiate a five-year demonstration project that would put low vision devices 
> in the hands of Medicare beneficiaries who, after a clinical evaluation by an 
> ophthalmologist or optometrist, can benefit from a low vision device and for 
> whom such devices are medically necessary. The legislation is careful to 
> require that the demonstration project be genuinely national in scope and is 
> explicitly designed to yield reliable data and meaningful results. Once the 
> legislation is enacted and the demonstration project is successfully 
> completed, Congress will have significantly richer data upon which to 
> consider changes to the Medicare program to make coverage of low vision 
> devices, especially the most costly devices, a permanent feature of the 
> program. Precisely how many individuals will receive low vision devices and 
> how many physicians across the country will participate in the demo project 
> will need to be determined by CMS, working in consultation with stakeholder 
> groups, as it develops and implements the project. The legislation makes 
> $12.5 million available for the project over five years.
> Advocates are encouraged to contact your members of the U.S. House of 
> Representatives and urge them to co-sponsor H.R. 3749. We are actively 
> working on Senate champions and will keep you updated as progress is made. 
> Thank you for your advocacy!
> For further information, contact: 
> Mark Richert, Esq.
> Director, Public Policy, AFB
> (202) 469-6833
> MRichert@xxxxxxx
> This message was sent to austin.evans60@xxxxxxxxx on March 6, 2014.
> HumanWare, 1 UPS Way, Champlain, NY 12919, USA
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  • » [tabi] Fwd: You're Invited!--Low Vision Devices and Medicare--Joint ACB/AFB Teleseminar Sponsored by HumanWare: March 12, 3pm ET - Lynn Evans