Falls Church, Va. — The International Chiropractors Association (ICA) is pleased to see that Representative Jackie Walorski, (R-IN), co-chair of the Integrative Health and Wellness Congressional Caucus, recently introduced H.R.2883 – Chiropractors Equity Act of 2019, which seeks to eliminate discrimination in the Medicare “Opt-Out” provision by allowing chiropractors to provide items and services through private contracts with Medicare beneficiaries. Eliminating this disparity has long been a goal of the chiropractic profession and is one of the key parameters in ICA’s proposed Medicare Legislation, which the ICA is diligently working to get introduced.
ICA’s objectives are to:
- Maintain the current mandate for coverage of the adjustment to correct a subluxation.
- Remove the restrictive language used to limit reimbursements to the adjustment “only.”
- Introduce the concepts of Sec. 2706 of the Public Health Service Act and eliminate discrimination based upon provider license type.
- Maintain economic neutrality by removing barriers to reimbursements for existing covered services only.
- Establishes equitability in reimbursement rates to other physician level providers.
- Eliminate discrimination that denies patients of chiropractic physicians the ability to privately contract.
Representative Walorski joined Representative Judy Chu (D-CA) in March as Co-Chairs of the bi-partisan Integrative Health and Wellness Congressional Caucus in the 116th Congress. The Congressional Caucus is intended to provide legislators a forum to learn about and engage with the integrative and wellness community. Both Representatives Chu and Walorski support expanding access to integrative health professionals and both serve on the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. ICA in collaboration with the Integrative Health Policy Consortium (IHPC) sponsored the March event that announced the Caucus. The ICA has participated in the IHPC for many years. Its president, Stephen Welsh, DC, FICA, is on the IHPC Board of Directors and Executive Committee and serves as co-chair of the Integrative Approaches to Pain and Addiction Committee. Working with IHPC during the previous administration, ICA was able to see the Public Health Service Act amended to include Section 2706, a provision endorsed by the ICA to promote non-discrimination for covered services in insurance.
Welsh stated, “It is heartening to see a member of Congress have the courage to introduce legislation that will eliminate the private contracting disparity and give chiropractic patients who are Medicare beneficiaries the same medical freedom to privately contract with their providers as patients of all the other physician level providers have. We need to help Representative Walorski gain support for HR 2883 and help increase the membership of the Caucus.”
Call Your Representative
To help, please call your Representative and ask them to do two things:
(1) Co-Sponsor H.R. 2883, the Chiropractors Equity Act of 2019; and
(2) Join the Integrative Health and Wellness Caucus.
To join the caucus, members of Congress should contact
Representative Chu’s office.
To find your member of Congress and their contact information, click here. Consider reaching out to your Representative on social media to make the request as well.
ICA wants to hear from you about your interactions with your Representative. Please email Beth Clay, Director of Government Relations, at firstname.lastname@example.org and share your experience and any feedback. ICA will provide updates to this and all legislation on the ICA website and through email communications.
Welsh continued, “The ICA is very active on Capitol Hill. We are continuing to promote our draft Medicare legislation which will fully eliminate discrimination against the patients of chiropractors who are currently being denied reimbursement for covered services such as the exam and x-ray when provided by a doctor of chiropractic. We do this while staying true to our values and preserving the existing mandate to cover the adjustment to correct a subluxation in the current definition of chiropractic within the law.”