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Medical Nutrition Equity Act

Ask your Elected Officials to Co-sponsor the Medical Nutrition Equity Act (S. 1194/H.R. 2587)

The CURED Foundation has been working with the Patients & Providers for Medical Nutrition Equity Coalition to advance the Medical Nutrition Equity Act (S. 1194/ H.R. 2587).

The Patients & Providers for Medical Nutrition Equity Coalition represents real people who manage disorders either for themselves, loved ones, or patients who require medical nutrition products to sustain their lives. We are working to educate federal lawmakers about the critical importance of the Medical Nutrition Equity Act, S1194 and HB2587

As patients and providers who depend on medical nutrition, we know the importance of the Medical Nutrition Equity Act, but we need to secure the support of individual members of Congress before we can make this bill a law. That means that we need to ask members of Congress to co-sponsor the bill.

The Patient & Providers for Medical Nutrition Equity Coalition has been meeting with members of Congress in DC to ask that they co-sponsor the bill.Many legislators have expressed interest, but have said that they need to hear from constituents before they can take this critical step. YOU, are a constituent because you live in their state (for senators) or congressional district (for representatives). Therefore, we need YOU to contact your members of Congress and ask them to become a co-sponsor before the end of August. There are many easy steps you can take to make this request to your elected officials.

  • Call the DC office of your elected official. Don’t worry, your elected official will not be the one who actually picks up the phone. A staff person will answer and ask you where you live (to verify that you are indeed a constituent) and what you are calling about. Tell them that you want the senator or representative to co-sponsor the Medical Nutrition Equity Act (S. 1194/H.R. 2587). You can find out who your two U.S. Senators and one U.S. Representative are by clicking here. You can also find out this information and be connected directly to the offices of your elected officials by calling the Congressional Switchboard at (202) 224-3121.
  • Email your elected official. A staff person will be reading the email, not the senator or representative, but emails can be important tools for not only making the simple request to co-sponsor the bill, but to also provide a little more detail on your story and why this is so important to you. Click here to find your two U.S. Senators and one Representative and then go to their websites. Once you are on their websites, you will find a link to “contact Senator X”. You will be asked to fill out your name and address (to verify that you are a constituent) and then there will be a place for you to write your text. If you are asked for a Message Topic, select “Health care” or write in “Medical Nutrition Equity Act.” There will also be a space for you to write a message. Write a few sentences about why this bill is important to you and then make sure you include the “ask”:  Please co-sponsor the Medical Nutrition Equity Act (S. 1194/ H.R. 2587). If the “send a message” page will allow you to send attachments, send them this fact sheet.
  • Tweet at your members of Congress. Again, you can find their Twitter handles by going here. Make sure you include their twitter handle (e.g., @senatorA) and our hashtags: #MedicalNutritionEquityNow and #PPMNE.

Keep doing these activities until you see your elected officials listed as a co-sponsor here. Ask your friends and family to reach out to their elected officials too. Remember, the squeaky wheel gets the grease!

State-based Laws Provide a Flawed Patchwork of Coverage For Medical Nutrition

The Medical Nutrition Equity Act will provide a Federal “floor” of coverage to ensure that no one falls through the thousands of loopholes created by state laws, which may limit coverage based on the following:

  • Insurance type: State laws do not apply to any self-insured private plans (~40% of employers with more than 100 employees) due to the ERISA exemption
  • Age: States may limit coverage to only young children, or only pregnant women,  leaving older children and adults who have life-long conditions with no coverage whatsoever
  • Income: States may limit benefits based on income. Often patients make too much to qualify for assistance under public insurance programs, but can’t afford to pay thousands of dollars for medical nutrition each year
  • Diagnosis: Some states cover only a single inborn error of metabolism, while others are more expansive but still limited
  • Nutritional Delivery Method: States may limit coverage based on how medical nutrition is administered, covering tube feedings but not oral formula, even when a patient can and wants to take the formula orally. This can lead to to unnecessary, invasive, risky, and expensive surgical procedures just to obtain insurance coverage for medical nutrition

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