The Partnership to Improve Patient Care (PIPC), along with 62 leading advocacy groups representing patients and people with disabilities, submitted a comment letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on Oregon's 1115(a) Demonstration Waiver renewable application.
The letter expresses concern that Oregon's application would further entrench health inequalities and deny access to care for those with disabilities and chronic conditions through the use of the quality-adjusted-life-years (QALY) metric. The state's defense of its use of the discriminatory QALY, as well as its efforts to exclude FDA-approved drugs from coverage, are inconsistent with Oregon's stated goals of health equities.
"We urge CMS to reject Oregon’s waiver renewal application, in accordance with its
decision in 1992," the letter states. "A consistent policy across Medicare and Medicaid barring the use of QALYs will serve to improve health equity, access to medically necessary care, and compliance with disability rights laws."
Additional letters related to the Oregon waiver renewal application were submitted by Disability Rights Oregon, Paul Terdal and Patients Rights Action Fund.