Resistbot Petition: Save access to massage therapy for chronic pain.

An open letter to the U.S. Congress

Save access to massage therapy for chronic pain.

80 so far! Help us get to 100 signers!

I urge you to band with fellow members of Congress and the members of the House and Senate Committees on Veterans’ Affairs to reverse a decision by the VA to lower reimbursement rates for massage therapy for chronic pain. If you aren’t familiar with that decision – certain to negatively impact the ability of veterans to received the medical massage therapy to which they are entitled – let me explain. I provide medical massage therapy to treat pain. Some of my patients are Veterans. Even though in-home and in-office Medical Massage Therapy is offered through the Veterans Administration as a fully covered benefit, an inappropriate application of a Medicare rule known as Multiple Procedure Payment Reduction (MPPR) is threatening to reduce that access. HVAC member Congressman Pappas (D-NH) recently called on VA Secretary McDonough to reverse the VA’s decision to lower reimbursement rates for massage therapy. “This decision has far-reaching implications, adversely affecting veterans’ well-being, providers, small business owners, and the overall effectiveness of our health care system.” Please see https://pappas.house.gov/media/press-releases/pappas-calls-on-va-to-protect-veterans-access-to-community-care-reverse-decision-to-lower-reimbursement-rates for more details. What is onerous is that the VA’s own research shows that 92 percent of Veterans who receive this therapy self-reported reduced pain, increased activity, better sleep, and improved mood. Half reported a reduction in both over-the-counter and prescription pain medications. Therapies that enhance mobility, mood, and overall health without the risk of deadly addictions affecting our Veteran communities have an important role to play. This low-risk, low-cost pain relief therapy to relieve pain is offered to Veterans, in their own homes, vastly improving compliance and reaching Veterans whose access to a local VAMC is limited by distance, mobility, or other complicating factors. Veterans deserve this important intervention, and it's only right that its providers deserve to be reimbursed sufficiently. Please do something.

▶ Created on March 25 by End Veteran Debt

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