The Lymphedema Treatment Act, a key piece of legislation for ONS’s health policy priorities, passed the U.S. House of Representatives in November 2022. The bill is now in the U.S. Senate for review along its journey to becoming law.
The Lymphedema Treatment Act provides Medicare coverage for healthcare provider-prescribed compression treatment items, including standard and custom fitted gradient garments and other approved items. U.S. Representatives Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), who is the bill’s lead sponsor, Buddy Carter (R-GA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), and Mike Kelly (R-PA) reintroduced it in June 2021.
"Today, the House took one giant step closer to finally providing needed relief to over three million lymphedema patients on Medicare," Schakowsky said. "My bill, the Lymphedema Treatment Act, which I was proud to introduce with my colleague, Carter, will expand access to medical compression garments that patients with lymphedema rely on to treat their painful, incurable swelling. The bill passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support thanks to the tireless work of advocates like Heather Ferguson, founder and executive director of the Lymphedema Advocacy Group, and her teenage sons. With tremendous bipartisan support in the Senate, we can get this bill to President Joe Biden's desk before the end of the year. Millions of patients with lymphedema are counting on us."
"We are one step closer to providing relief for lymphedema patients, who live through one of the worst diagnoses imaginable—cancer—only to come out the other side with an equally debilitating condition and a fraction of the resources and support,” Carter said. “As co-chair of the Cancer Survivors Caucus and a pharmacist, I am excited to see Congress provide relief to patients who have been denied Medicare coverage for far too long.”
Schakowsky also lauded ONS as one of the bill’s major supporters. But the work isn’t over yet: Join ONS in advocating for the bill in the Senate and others that put patient needs first to ensure they have access to essential treatment and care.