Bill to Help COPD Patients

Representatives Mike Thompson (D-CA),  TJ Cox (D-CA), Mike Kelly (R-PA), and Earl L. “Buddy” Carter (R-GA), recently introduced the “Better Respiration through Expanded Access to Tele-Health” (BREATHE) Act (H.R 2308).

The bill would designate a three year pilot program allowing qualified Respiratory Therapists to serve as telehealth practitioners to deliver disease management services to Medicare patients with COPD and would allow Congress and CMS to evaluate the value of using Respiratory Therapists as telehealth practitioners.

COPD is the third leading cause of death in the U.S and is the fourth most costly condition with respect to hospital readmissions. In California alone, there are 4.1 million people suffering from pulmonary disease. According to the American Lung Association’s recent “State of the Air 2019” report, cities in California’s 21st Congressional District are among the most polluted in the nation.

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