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NAHC Report: Issue# 2242, 7/24/2013
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House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Releases Draft Legislation that Would Increase Cost-sharing In Medicare – Including Adding a Home Health Copay
Members of Congress Circulate a Dear Colleague Letter
For Your Information: Deciphering ICD-9-CM Coding for Hospices Webinar Recording Now Available for Purchase
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House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Releases Draft Legislation that Would Increase Cost-sharing In Medicare – Including Adding a Home Health Copay
Chairman seeking public feedback on proposals in draft legislation; all NAHC members encouraged to submit their comments to by August 16, 2013.

Late last week, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) released draft legislation that would seriously change the benefit structure of Medicare. Proposals included in the draft legislation range from increasing the Medicare Part B deductible for new enrollees to increasing income-related premiums under Parts B & D. Of greatest concern to NAHC and its members is the suggested implementation of a home health copay. 

The home health copay proposal in the draft legislation was also included in the President’s FY14 budget.  It would impose a $100 copay on home health episodes not preceded by a hospital or nursing home stay, beginning in 2017 and applying to those who become newly eligible for Medicare in 2017 or later.

The National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) remains committed in its opposition to shifting additional costs onto Medicare home health beneficiaries in the form of more out of pocket expense. With respect to the proposed home health copayment, Congress eliminated such a “sick tax” on beneficiaries back in the 1970s when it was found that such copayments were ineffective at saving the Medicare program money, as people had to seek more costly care options.

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Deciphering ICD-9-CM Coding for Hospices Webinar Recording Now Available for Purchase

“Now we know how to handle coding for our hospice patients who don’t have a specific diagnosis.  Thank you!”

The recording of this popular webinar, presented by nationally recognized ICD-9-CM coding expert Lisa Selman-Holman, is now available in downloadable MP4 and CD-ROM format.   If you previously registered for the event you receive a discount on the recording.  The downloadable MP4 is available for 30 days.  Detailed information about the webinar and presenter are below. 

Order your copy by clicking here.

Webinar Description and Objectives 

CMS has said multiple times that hospices should follow coding guidelines and should be coding more than the one terminal diagnosis. Improved insight into coding guidelines will provide strategies and solutions for compliance with the regulatory mandates from CMS. The timelines for new edits denying primary diagnoses of debility and failure to thrive are unknown but will be announced soon. Educating referring physicians and the operational impact on your monthly claims needs to be analyzed and adjustments implemented now. Lisa will discuss the regulatory mandates and add insight into coding in hospice.

  • Describe how the terminal diagnosis and related diagnoses should be identified.
  • Discuss the CMS decision to prohibit debility and failure to thrive as terminal illnesses and.alternatives to debility and failure to thrive.
  • Identify methods to improve compliance with coding guidelines and describe the patient's complex medical needs related to the terminal diagnosis.

About the Presenter

Lisa Selman Holman, JD, BSN, RN, HCS-D, HCS-O, COS-C
AHIMA Approved ICD-10-CM Trainer/Ambassador

Lisa is a veteran of home care with over 26 years spent in home health and hospice, both as an RN and as an attorney practicing exclusively in home care. She is the owner of Selman-Holman & Associates, LLC, a full-service home care and hospice consulting firm and CoDR (Coding Done Right), an outsourcing company for home care and hospice coding.

She participates on the Board of Medical Specialty Coding and Compliance specialty board on OASIS and is the chair of the specialty board on home care coding. She has provided education to home health and hospice professionals since 1994.

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Members of Congress Circulate a Dear Colleague Letter

The Medicare home health face-to-face (F2F) physician encounter requirements continue to be a major problem for home health agencies and their patients.  Recently, NAHC allies in Congress circulated a Dear Colleague letter and a draft sign-on letter to CMS delivered to every member of the House of Representatives seeking relief from the onerous F2F documentation requirements. 

The bipartisan Dear Colleague letter — sent by Representatives Tom Reed (R-NY), Paul Tonko (D-NY), Chris Smith (R-NJ), and Robert Andrews (D-NJ) — invites other members of the House to sign on a letter to CMS. 

In the letter, the original four signees state that, “we have been hearing from home health providers and agencies from across the country that believe the Physician Face-to-Face (F2F) requirements currently being implemented by CMS as part of the Affordable Care Act are overly complicated and overlap with documentation requirements that are already in place.”

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