Summary of Key Points in the CMS Open Door Forum on Home Health, Hospice

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) held a Home Health, Hospice & DME Open Door Forum (ODF) on May 15, 2019.  Below is a summary of the ODF topics pertaining to home health and hospice. Hospice CMS reviewed the FY2020 Hospice Proposed Rule key points.  It was clear from the questions at the…

CMS Updates Info on New Medicare Cards

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) sent out a brief update on the new Medicare cards that were shipped out to all beneficiaries from April 2018 to April 2019. You can find the Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) on the remittance advice of a prior claim or from your Medicare Administrative Contractor’s portal (get access…

More Older Adults With Joint Replacements Recover At Home, Not Rehab

Judith Graham KAISER HEALTH NETWORK Older adults and their families often wonder: Where’s the best place to recover after a hip or knee replacement — at home or in a rehabilitation facility? Increasingly, the answer appears to be home if the procedure is elective, friends and family are available to help and someone doesn’t have…

Recently Added OIG Work Plan Item May Impact Home Health and Hospice Providers

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) work planning is dynamic and adjustments are made throughout the year to meet priorities and to anticipate and respond to emerging issues. A Work Plan has been developed, made public, and updated monthly with new issues.  This month, there are two new issues…

CMS FY2020 Hospice Payment Rule Rebases RHC, GIP and IRC; Imposes New “Transparency” Requirements

  –2.7% Payment Update and Wage Index Changes Part of Significant Rule Changes On Friday, April 19, 2019, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) posted its proposed FY2020 payment rule titled, “Medicare Program; FY 2020 Hospice Wage Index and Payment rate Update and Hospice Quality Reporting Requirements”.  Comments on the rule will be…

Updates to the CMS Extended Repayment Schedule Information and Interest Rates

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released updates to two important transmittals, one relating to Extended Repayment Schedules (ERS), and the other to interest rates. The update to the ERS transmittal updates the language in the CMS Program Integrity Manual, Chapter 4, related to Extended Repayment Schedules (ERS), Transmittal 312/Change Request (CR)…

MedPAC Examines Payment Based on Value and Patients’ Functional Status

A meeting of the Medicare Payment Advisory Council (MedPAC) earlier this month evaluated the application of patient functional status in payment adjustment, provider performance, and the establishment of plans of care. This presentation by MedPAC evaluated the quality of the data submitted by providers and was a follow-up to a past session on patient assessment…

CMS to Publish MAC “Cost Report Acceptability Checklists” in Medicare Manual

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has published a transmittal (Transmittal 2273/Change Request 10920) indicating intent to publish (as Exhibits in a forthcoming revised Chapter 8 of the Medicare Financial Management Manual) Cost Report Acceptability Checklists for Hospitals, SNFs, Home Health Agencies/Hospices, and Home Offices that are currently used by the Medicare Administrative…

MedPAC Calls for Home Health Rate Cut, NAHC Objects

MedPAC, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, released its annual March report to Congress on March 15, 2019.  MedPAC is required to produce this report; however, Congress is not required to act upon all the recommendations contained in the report and historically has not done so.  Chapters 9 and 12 of the Report, Home Health Recommendations…

MedPAC Opposes Episode-Based Payment for Post-Acute, For Now

On March 8, 2019 the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) panel concluded that a unified payment system for post-acute care facilities should be based on each patient stay and not the entire episode of care. The discussion among commission members focused on how to create a unified prospective payment system to make Medicare fee-for-service payments…