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Advocating for Medically Complex Kids at the Minnesota Capitol

When PHS is at the Capitol advocating for Minnesota’s most vulnerable population, there is one overarching message we have for legislators – kids deserve to thrive at home. Our staff and supporters know the legislation we fight for will help keep kids there, and over the last few months, PHS has had the incredible involvement of families and staff to bring this message to Minnesota’s legislators.

Keep MN Medicaid from adopting Medicare

claire at the capitol

PHS patient Claire visits the Capitol with her family, nurse and PHS staff

During the 2015 session, PHS has been focused on two bills that will ensure access to specialized medical technologies and high quality care for children with medical complexities. The first – keeping Medicare pricing cuts out of Medicaid – will protect patient access to critical medical equipment and supplies, and both the Senate Health and Human Services (HHS) bill and the House HHS bill contain provisions to de-link state Medicaid durable medical equipment rates from Medicare rates. While it is good news that the provision is in both bills, the final goal will be to end up in the negotiated, compromise bill between the House and Senate – referred to as the HHS omnibus conference committee report.

A new reimbursement tier


PHS nurse Nick works on equipment in a home

The second – establishing a new reimbursement tier for home care nursing – focuses on providing adequate compensation for the highly skilled work our home care nurses deliver. We believe that the real cost to the state of getting pediatric patients out of the hospitals sooner and into home care nursing would save the state money, and want to educate others on that opportunity as well.

Nearing adjournment


PHS families played an incredible role in helping us advocate for kiddos

The legislature is due to adjourn on May 18, but Governor Dayton, the House of Representatives, and the Senate are very far apart on their budget numbers with only 12 days to go. For the first time, the Health and Human Services Conference Committee convened to work on differences between the Senate and House HHS bills on Tuesday. It has been a busy few months as the bills move through the Senate and House, and along with incredible family advocates, PHS has had the opportunity to provide meaningful testimony at hearings.

Originally published: May 1, 2015

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