CMS Response to Chairman Waxman's Inquiry (June 29, 2007)   [open pdf - 1MB]

"Thank you for the opportunity to respond to your June 22 letter regarding the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) response to the Nation's emergency care crisis. We realize these responses are not a substitute for testimony before the Committee, but I hope they will provide insight into CMS' actions in support of our Nation's emergency care providers. We provided answers on June 22 to draft questions sent by the Committee on June 19. Today, we are following up with responses to the questions we received on June 22. CMS recognizes the significant role our programs play in financing emergency services, as well as the challenges facing our Nation's emergency departments, trauma centers, and medical first responders. We also appreciate the insight provided by the Institute of Medicine's (IOM) series of reports: 'Emergency Medical Services at the Crossroads.' The careful deliberations that informed the reports and their recommendations are a testament to the hard work and dedication of IOM's Committee on the Future of Emergency Care in the United States Health System. However, we realize that success in this arena cannot be achieved by our agency alone. Although Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries account for the largest number of inpatients admitted through emergency departments, private pay patients account for the largest volume of emergency department visits overall. Thus, we are committed to moving toward a collaborative, value-driven process so that change in our Nation's emergency care system can be realized."

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U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform: http://oversight.house.gov/
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