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C-TAC Applauds Introduction of Bipartisan, Bicameral Legislation to Support Medicare Beneficiaries’ Healthcare Decisions

Today, champions of advanced illness care reform introduced a bipartisan and bicameral bill that promotes innovative utilization of advance directives and encourages Medicare beneficiaries to express end of life care wishes. The Medicare Choices Empowerment and Protection Act, introduced by Senators Chris Coons (D-DE), Bill Cassidy, MD (R-LA), John Barrasso (R-WY), and Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Representatives Mike Thompson (D-CA), Diane Black (R-TN), Chris Collins (R-NY), and Peter Welch (D-VT), illustrates the bipartisan momentum behind policies that bring America one step closer to high-quality, person-centered advanced illness care.

The bill would establish an Advance Directive Certification Program, allowing Medicare beneficiaries to receive a financial incentive for completing advance directives. Advance directives preemptively document a beneficiary’s health care decisions. By encouraging advance directives, the Act would put people and their families in the center of their healthcare decisions. The program would authorize the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to grant accreditation to advance directive programs that meet certain requirements.

C-TAC strongly supports the Medicare Choices Empowerment and Protection Act, along with other important federal legislative measures, such as the recently-introduced Patient Choice and Quality Care Act (PCQCA), that promise to deliver higher quality, more comprehensive care to those with advanced illness. We commend the bill’s sponsoring members for their leadership and look forward to collaborating with them on future efforts to reform advanced illness care.

Please find the joint press release announcing the bill here.

For more information about C-TAC policy and advocacy activities, please contact Andrew MacPherson at AMacPherson@thectac.org or C-TAC’s Communications and Policy Coordinator Ziya Smallens at ZSmallens@TheCTAC.org.

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