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Hospice Executives Visit With Senator Susan Collins

Arlene Wing, CEO at Hospice of Southern Maine, and Kandyce Powell, Executive Director at The Maine Hospice Council and Center for End of Life met with Senator Susan Collins in Washington DC on April 22, 2013 to discuss legislative issues pertaining to hospice. Senator Collins has been a longstanding supporter of hospice services and champion for excellent end of life care. The Senator recently had a friend cared for at the Gosnell Memorial Hospice House that is part of Hospice of Southern Maine. She was very moved by the excellent end of life care that her friend received and it has deepened her commitment to hospice care as an excellent choice for compassion, care, and comfort through end of life.

During their meeting with senator Collins, Arlene and Kandyce stressed the importance of preserving hospice reimbursement and discussed the impacts that the sweeping cuts to Medicare reimbursement are having on hospices everywhere. Inflationary pressures continue to increase expenses while cuts to reimbursement, including the recent 2% cut from Sequestration reduce income. These cuts will threaten the future sustainability of many hospices. We will continue to reach out to our legislators in order to increase understanding as to the importance of hospice in our health care system, and the need to support adequate reimbursement for hospice care.