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:: NAHC Report
NAHC Report: Issue# 2254, 8/15/2013
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ARTICLE ARCHIVES MEMBER RESOURCES eNEWSLETTERS CARING STORE
HHS Initiative to Accelerate Interoperability and HIE to Include Home Health Agencies
An Update on the Face-to-Face Dear Colleague Letter
For Your Information: NAHC Needs Your Help and Participation in its Face-to-Face Encounter Documentation Denials Survey
NAHC/Home Care & Hospice Events
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HHS Initiative to Accelerate Interoperability and HIE to Include Home Health Agencies

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently announced through the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for Health Information Technology (HIT) its initiative for accelerating health information exchange (HIE) across a wide spectrum of providers in acute and long-term post-acute care (LTPAC) settings. Home health was included as one of these providers.

ONC and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) held a webinar on their “Principles and Strategy for Acceleration Health Information Exchange and Advancing Interoperability” and also released a corresponding paper. The paper outlines CMS/HHS existing policies regarding HIE and also includes feedback from a joint request for information (RFI) issued in March 2013, which received responses from more than 200 stakeholders including ling-term and post-acute care and behavioral health providers.

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NAHC Needs Your Help and Participation in its Face-to-Face Encounter Documentation Denials Survey

Recently two of the CMS contractors a have announced widespread audits of home health providers with a key focus on compliance with the face-to-face (F2F) encounter documentation requirements. The documentation requirements have become more stringent recently with contractors now expecting physicians to write detailed descriptions of the patient’s condition in order to support the need for skilled services and homebound status.

NAHC has heard that one contractor has denied 399 claims out of 801 within an 11-day period related to the revised guidelines for the F2F documentation.   

NAHC once again needs to present the case to CMS that home care agencies are in an untenable position with the more stringent F2F requirement guidelines.

Before making such a case, however, NAHC needs to gather solid data to present to the regulators. NAHC has developed a survey with specific questions regarding the number and reasons for F2F denials, and asks its members to take a few moments to offer their insight.

The following survey should only take a few minutes to complete and will provide us with valuable information.

Please click here to access the survey. Your feedback is very important.

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An Update on the Face-to-Face Dear Colleague Letter

NAHC Report recently announced that several Members of Congress circulated a Dear Colleague letter and a draft sign-on letter to CMS regarding the Medicare home health face-to-face (F2F) physician encounter requirements that continue to be a burden for home health providers.

Every member of the House of Representatives received copies of the Dear Colleague and draft CMS letter seeking relief from the onerous F2F documentation requirements, which was sent by sent by Representatives Tom Reed (R-NY), Paul Tonko (D-NY), Chris Smith (R-NJ), and Robert Andrews (D-NJ).

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