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:: NAHC Report
NAHC Report: Issue# 2211, 6/6/2013
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ARTICLE ARCHIVES MEMBER RESOURCES eNEWSLETTERS CARING STORE
Abt Explores Hospice Payment Options, Utilization in Technical Report for CMS
OIG Semiannual Report Addresses Home Health
For Your Information: NAHC President Provides an Update on Legislative Activities
NAHC/Home Care & Hospice Events
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Abt Explores Hospice Payment Options, Utilization in Technical Report for CMS

Abt Associates, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) hospice payment contractor, has been conducting analysis of utilization and cost data to help inform discussions on ways to modify the current payment structure so that it better reflects actual costs incurred during a hospice length of stay.

Hospice payment reform was mandated by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to occur no earlier than October 1, 2013. In a presentation at the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) March on Washington earlier this year, an Abt representative discussed findings from their study related to:

  • Trends in Hospice Cost Reports
  • Trends in General Inpatient Utilization (GIP)
  • Impact of the Face-to-Face Requirement on Hospice Benefit Periods

More recently, CMS posted online a copy of a hospice payment technical report, “Medicare Hospice Payment Reform: Hospice Study Technical Report,” that contains study findings for the topics listed above, as well as Part D utilization while enrolled in hospice and discussion of payment reform options; these topics are covered as part of this article.

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NAHC President Provides an Update on Legislative Activities

NAHC President Val J. Halamandaris recently gave a video update on several key developments concerning the federal budget and legislative activities surrounding in.

In the video, available here, Mr. Halamandaris states that there is good news in the form of additional tax revenues coming into the Treasury, as well as a strong indicator that the economy is, “starting to boom.”

While the video highlights several pieces of good news at the federal level, Mr. Halamandaris also reminds all NAHC members about how important it is for all NAHC members to attend the Annual Meeting October 31 – November 3 in Washington, DC to continue to fight to preserve Medicare by opposing additional cuts to the program and also opposing the reintroduction of any home care copayments.

To attend NAHC’s annual meeting, please click here.

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OIG Semiannual Report Addresses Home Health

Last week the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued its Semiannual Report to Congress. This report summarizes activities of the Office of Inspector General (OIG), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), for the 6-month period that ended March 31, 2013. The Report addressed work of the OIG in fulfilling its responsibilities, such as to identify and investigate fraud and abuse, assign individuals to the Program Exclusion list, and approve and monitor Corporate Integrity Agreements.

In the report the OIG projected expected recoveries of about $3.8 billion for the first half of 2013 including over $521 million in audit receivables and about $3.28 billion in investigative receivables. In addition, 1,661 exclusions from Federal health programs, 484 criminal actions against individuals or entities that engaged in crimes against HHS programs; and 240 civil actions were reported on. Although no hospice providers were identified in the Report, the results of a number of OIG home health federal Medicare and Medicaid program initiatives are detailed.

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