CMS to Host New Open Door Forum for PDGM, Home Health and Hospice

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will host an Open Door Forum on home health, hospice, and durable medical equipment on Wednesday, January 16, 2019 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM Eastern Time. The Home Health Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) and Review Choice Demonstration (RCD) are two critical topics that will be covered…

Hospices Have Limited Time to Submit Aggregate Cap Report

The hospice self-determined aggregate cap reports and any overpayments are due February 28, 2019.  Hospices have been completing their own cap reports and submitting them to their Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) since the 2014 cap year. If the MAC does not receive the hospice’s completed report by the due date of February 28, 2019, the…

New Edit for Hospice Medicare Claim Processing

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released Change Request (CR) 11049/Transmittal 4187, Ensuring Only the Active Billing Hospice Can Submit a Revocation, which implements a new edit for hospice claims received on or after July 1, 2019.  Currently, the Common Working File (CWF) will allow Notices of Revocation/Termination (NOTR – Type of Bill…

SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act Opens Federal Door for Hospices to Dispose of Controlled Substances

In September 2014 the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued final regulations implementing the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010   in which the agency clarified  (for the firs time) that hospices were prohibited from disposing or assisting in the disposal of controlled substances for hospice patients unless there was a state law granting authority…

New Report on Hospice and Nursing Home Contracting

PLEASE NOTE THAT TODAY IS THE FINAL DAY NAHC REPORT WILL BE PUBLISHED IN 2018. WE WILL RETURN ON JANUARY 2, 2019. The office of the Assistant Secretary of Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently released a report, Trends in Nursing Home-Hospice Contracting and Common Ownership Between…

CMS Modifies, Finalizes E & M Payment Changes: Potential Implications for Hospice, Palliative Care

In late July 2018, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a rule (Medicare Program; Revisions to Payment Policies Under the Physician Fee Schedule and Other Revisions to Part B for CY 2019; Medicare Shared Savings Program Requirements; Quality Payment Program; and Medicaid Promoting Interoperability Program) proposing sweeping changes to payment and documentation…

Hospice Quality Notes: Updates and Reminders

CAHPS Hospice Survey Survey Instruments: The CAHPS Hospice Survey mail and telephone materials from the Quality Assurance Guidelines V 5.0 (QAG V5.0) in all approved translations have been posted to the CMS CAHPS Hospice Survey website, Survey Instruments webpage.  Survey vendors must utilize the revised CAHPS Hospice Survey materials beginning with January 2019 decedents (caregivers surveyed beginning…

Report: Home Health, Hospice Show Steady Growth

Home health admissions grew in the year from the second quarter of 2017 to the second quarter of 2018, while hospice utilization also got a boost with particularly strong activity in western states, according to a new report from Excel Health. The narrative of the report, which tracks statistics for Medicare, post-acute discharge, home health,…

NAHC Wants Your Input for 2019 Legislative & Regulatory Agendas

The policy staffs of the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) and its affiliates — the Hospice Association of America (HAA), the National Medicaid Action Council, and the Private Duty Home Care Association (PDHCA) — are in the process of developing their agendas for legislative and regulatory activities in the coming year. NAHC,…

New Report from NAHC and HCS Show Hospice Salaries

The national hourly rate for Hospice CNAs was 9.84% higher in Visiting Nurse Associations (VNAs) than at for-profit hospice agencies. CNAs in VNAs received $14.96/hour, while CNAs in for-profit hospices received $13.62/hour. Figures are from the just released 2018-2019 Hospice Salary & Benefits Report, published by Hospital & Healthcare Compensation Service (HCS), in cooperation with…