The Homebound Clarification Act, H.R. 1490, which is endorsed by the Muscular Dystrophy Association, has also obtained the backing of former Sen. Robert Dole, R-Kan.
Dole has agreed to act as honorary chairman of the National Coalition to Amend the Medicare Homebound Restriction for Americans with Significant Chronic Illness (NCAHB).
Founded by David Jayne of Rex, Ga., an MDA volunteer who has ALS, the coalition has been instrumental in the re-introduction of legislation that would increase access to in-home health care for people covered by Medicare. Federal eligibility rules restrict the duration and frequency of absences from home.
"Current Medicare rules governing access to homebound care unnecessarily isolate people with disabilities by requiring that they stay within the confines of their homes to receive services and benefits," said a recent statement of support for the bill from the MDA National Task Force on Public Awareness.
As of press time, H.R. 1490 had 54 co-sponsors in the House. In the Senate, Sen. James Jeffords, I-Vt., has expressed interest in re-introducing the measure.
Supporters of the Homebound Clarification Act can reach their representatives in their district offices during the congressional work period until Sept. 4. To find out more about the bill, visit the coalition's site at www.amendhomeboundpolicy.homestead.com.