House Energy and Commerce Amends HR 3200 to Ensure Rural Representation for Medicare Decisions

Rural champion Congressman Greg Walden (R-OR-2), representing Oregon's second Congressional district, successfully added an amendment to HR 3200, America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009, during today’s markup of the bill in the Energy and Commerce Committee. The amendment, which received a unanimous vote, ensures proportional rural representation on the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC), or on the proposed federal Medicare advisory committee that is likely to be created as a result of the bill's final passage. 

This amendment is a huge step for rural America, which has traditionally been underrepresented in MedPAC despite statutory requirements that a “balance” of its commissioners have rural expertise.  Currently, only two of the seventeen MedPAC Commissioners have significant rural experience, despite the fact that rural America is home to over 25% of Medicare beneficiaries. 

Please join the NRHA in thanking Congressman Walden, and every member of the Energy and Commerce Committee for their support for rural health. 

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