In 2012, Independence at Home began as a three-year demonstration program through the Affordable Care Act

Washington (December 23, 2020) – Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), commended a three-year extension of the Independence At Home (IAH) demonstration project in the year-end budget legislation. Independence at Home is an innovative, team-based model that is bringing measurable, high-quality care to patients suffering from multiple debilitating diseases such as Alzheimer’s, ALS, congestive heart failure, diabetes and Parkinson’s, while significantly lowering costs for the Medicare program. In addition to the extension, the package also includes an increase in the number of eligible beneficiaries. In April 2019, Senators Markey and Portman reintroduced legislation (S.1202) to convert the Independence at Home demonstration into a permanent, national Medicare program.
In 2012, Independence at Home began as a three-year demonstration program. In 2015 and 2017, the House of Representatives and Senate approved two-year extensions. Senators Markey and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) are the original co-authors of the Independence at Home provision in the Affordable Care Act.

“When we provide health care to our most vulnerable in their living rooms, we help curtail their visits to emergency rooms,” said Senator Markey. “Independence at Home improves the care that frail patients receive, while saving taxpayers money by catching emerging health problems early. With the IAH program set to expire this year, this extension is critical. But I will continue to work to make this innovative program permanently accessible for all Medicare beneficiaries and their family caregivers in the future, and I thank Senators Portman and Wyden for their partnership on this innovative program.”

“The Independence at Home program is delivering results and saving money,” said Senator Portman. “It has made a difference by reducing hospital readmissions, preventing costly hospital and nursing home admissions, and, most importantly, keeping our seniors healthy and in their preferred care setting. I’m pleased the final FY 2021 bipartisan funding bill extends and expands this program so that it can continue to help our seniors while also making it more accessible to Medicare beneficiaries in Ohio and across the nation.”

Independence at Home empowers teams of doctors, care givers and other health care professionals to coordinate and provide primary care services in the comfort of patients’ own homes, reducing unnecessary emergency room visits and avoidable hospitalizations and readmissions, as well as the costs associated with them. Data from the fifth year of the program showed an average Medicare savings of $2,711 per beneficiary in the demonstration.