Monday, March 14, 2011

Rep. Matt Heinz: Restore Hospice Funding for Dying Arizonans

Posted By on Mon, Mar 14, 2011 at 2:00 PM

politics_phone1.jpg
Rep. Matt Heinz of Tucson is fighting to restore hospice care to dying patients. Jorge Salazar of Cronkite News Service brings us the details:

Restoring hospice care to Medicaid-covered services in Arizona would provide better and more cost-effective care for dying patients, a lawmaker said.

Rep. Matt Heinz, D-Tucson, authored a bill that would allow for individuals covered by the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System to receive end-of-life services at in-patient hospice facilities.

“It is a lot more cost effective as compared to an acute-care facility, a hospital or a hospital’s ICU,” he said.

Heinz said he came across the issue through his experience as an in-patient hospital physician.

“I’ve had multiple hospital physicians and other physicians in the community contact me asking why this service, which is a much more cost-effective service for the patients and better for family, was removed,” he said.

Heinz worked with Tom Betlach, director of AHCCCS, and Jennifer Carusetta, legislative liaison for the program, on the measure.

Although AHCCCS is required to provide end-of-life services, it currently doesn’t do so at in-patient hospices, Carusetta said.

“When the budget of Arizona turned downward, that authorization was not continued,” she said.

Carusetta said AHCCCS officials don’t know exactly how much money would be saved from implementing the change, but she said that at the very least it wouldn’t cost more.

The House approved Heinz’s bill, HB 2099, on Thursday by a vote of 38-22, forwarding it to the Senate.

The measure would also cover fee-for-service AHCCCS members, the majority of whom are American Indian and served by the federally funded Indian Health Service.

“They are completely restricted right now from offering hospice, and this would allow them to get that better, more appropriate care at that particular time which they cannot receive at this time,” Heinz said.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Previously in the Range

More by Jim Nintzel

Today | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon
Burlesque Fitness

Burlesque Fitness @ Floor Polish

Mondays, Wednesdays, 4:30-5:30 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

Staff Pick

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum Cool Summer Nights

Beat Arizona heat and enjoy a family-friendly outing during the Desert Museum’s Cool Summer Nights. The stunning… More

@ Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum Saturdays, 5-10 p.m. Continues through Sept. 2 2021 N. Kinney Road.

» More Picks

Submit an Event Listing

Popular Content

  1. Tour Diaries: XIXA Day 8: 'Gabe Heard and Saw Me Reset My Knee From Across the Room.' (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  2. A Few Thoughts on the New AzMERIT Scores (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  3. Tour Diaries! XIXA Day 9: Show Rocks, Then Laundry Day in The Swiss Alps. (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  4. Laughing Stock: The Dating Game, Repeatedly (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  5. HoCo Fest Labor Day Weekend Schedule Unveiled Today (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)

© 2017 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation