MedPAC Recommends Home Health Rate Cut

During their recent January 14-15 meeting, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) recommended to Congress a five percent base rate cut for home health services. The recommendations follows the base rate discussions held during MedPAC’s previous meeting in December 2020.  Prior to the vote, commissioners received a presentation form MedPAC staff on the current state…

MedPAC Recommends Hospice Payment Freeze, Cap Cut for FY2022

Recommendations will advance to Congress As NAHC Report anticipated, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC), an advisory body to Congress, met this week to finalize payment and policy recommendations that will be incorporated in its annual March Report to Congress.  Among the items MedPAC acted on were payment recommendations for the hospice sector in fiscal year (FY)…

MedPAC Calls for Home Health Payment Rate Reduction

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) convened for a series of sessions discussing recommendations the panel will vote on in 2021 and present to the Congress as formal recommendations for the various sectors of the Medicare program. This is an annual process where commissioners discuss recommendations in December, vote in January, and present to the…

MedPAC Tees Up Hospice Freeze and Aggregate Cap Cut for FY2022 Recommendations

Last week the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) reviewed the latest available data on Medicare hospice utilization and discussed potential hospice payment recommendations for FY2022 with an eye toward their inclusion in the annual March Report to Congress.   Commission members expressed preliminary support for inclusion of the following recommendations: For fiscal year 2022, eliminate…

New Target Area for Hospice PEPPER

The 2021 release of the Hospice Program for Evaluating Payment Patterns Electronic Report (PEPPER), anticipated spring  2021, will include at least one new target area – Average Number of Part D Claims per Hospice Episode.  This target area will measure the count of Medicare Part D claims for beneficiaries billed during hospice episodes in the…

MedPAC Discusses Future Directions in Hospice Payment Reforms

–Seeks Solution for Long-Stay Incentives and Troublesome Utilization Patterns On October 1, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) began discussions of future directions for hospice payment policy. Hospice has undergone payment changes in recent years, including creation of a two-tiered payment system for Routine Home Care (RHC) and more recent recalibration of payments between the…

MedPAC Finds Pandemic Devastated Nursing Homes, Assisted Living Facilities

Steep decline in home care services has mostly recovered. The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) recently reconvened for a series of sessions in their continued efforts to optimize the Medicare program. Leading off the September meeting was a session focused on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Medicare program. As expected, the MedPAC…

Hospice Quality Reporting Program Revisions Proposed

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is planning to revise the Hospice Quality Reporting Program (HQRP) measures and the Hospice Item Set (HIS) to remove Section O from the HIS and replace the Hospice Visits When Death is Imminent measure with a Hospice Visits in the Last Days of Life measure. Section O…

MedPAC Calls for Cuts to Home Health and Hospice

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) recommended a seven percent payment reduction to the base home health payment rate for 2021 and the elimination of the update to the FY2021 base payment rates for hospice, at their meeting on January 16. In past years the commission has recommended a five percent reduction in the home…

MedPAC Staff Recommend 7 Percent Cut in Medicare Payment to Home Health Providers

On December 5, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) convened for a session titled Assessing Payment Adequacy and Updating Payments: Home Health Care. This is an annual process where the commission receives a presentation evaluating payment adequacy for services rendered, as well as a report on patient access to home health services, and quality of…