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NAHC Report: Issue# 2342, 12/27/2013
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CR 8504 Medicare Benefit Policy Manual – RHC and FQHC Update – Chapter 13
NAHC Year in Review: Health Information Technology Policy and Legislation
For Your Information: Hospice Item Set (HIS) Trainings – Save the Date!
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CR 8504 Medicare Benefit Policy Manual – RHC and FQHC Update – Chapter 13

CMS has released updates to the Rural Health Clinic (RHC) and Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) services section of the Medicare Benefit Policy Manual, Publication 100-2. This includes revisions to the Hospice Attending Practitioner and Provision of Services to Hospice Patients in a RHC or FQHC sections.

The revisions clarify the hospice and RHC or FQHC relationship related to attending practitioner services, services related and unrelated to the terminal diagnosis and billing for these services. The sections are copied below for your convenience. Items in italics are the revisions.

The full CR can be accessed here.

200.1 - Hospice Attending Practitioner (Rev. 173, Issued: 11-22-13, Effective: 01-01-14, Implementation: 01-06-14)

Medicare beneficiaries who elect the Medicare hospice benefit may choose either an individual physician or NP to serve as their attending practitioner (Section 1861(dd) of the Act). RHCs and FQHCs are not authorized under the statute to be hospice attending practitioners. However, a physician or NP who works for a RHC or FQHC may provide hospice attending services during a time when he/she is not working for the RHC or FQHC (unless prohibited by their RHC or FQHC contract or employment agreement). These services would not be considered RHC or FQHC services, since they are not being provided by a RHC or FQHC practitioner during RHC or FQHC hours.

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Hospice Item Set (HIS) Trainings – Save the Date!

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced plans for provider training related to the Hospice Item Set (HIS) and advises hospices to mark their calendars for the upcoming CMS provider trainings. CMS will host a series of provider trainings for the HIS in February and May 2014.
Beginning July 1, 2014, hospices will be required to submit two HIS records for each patient admission – a HIS-Admission record and a HIS-Discharge record.
Trainings will be divided into two sessions:

  • HIS data collection training: will be held over two half-day sessions on February 4 in the afternoon and February 5, 2014 in the afternoon.
    • This training will be geared towards teaching hospice providers how to complete the HIS-Admission and HIS-Discharge. The training will cover each item in the HIS, including instruction on how to complete each item, examples for each item, and a question and answer session.
    • The training will be video-streamed live online on February 4th and 5th. The training will also be videorecorded and will be posted on the CMS HQRP website at a later date for provider viewing and download. Limited on-site attendance at this training will also be available. 
  • HIS Technical training: will be held in May 2014, exact date TBD.
    • This technical training for hospice providers and vendors will cover topics such as registration, obtaining user IDs, submitting files to the QIES ASAP system, and reviewing final validation reports. 
    • Details about the date, time, and delivery method of this training are not yet available. Providers should check the CMS HQRP website (link below) for updates.

Further details about HIS training registration processes will be posted on the CMS HQRP website as they become available. Providers should visit the CMS HQRP website here on a regular basis for the most up-to-date information.

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NAHC Year in Review: Health Information Technology Policy and Legislation

2013 was an eventful year within the health IT realm for home care and hospice providers. Below are the most significant developments for the home care and hospice community with respect to Health IT policy and legislation compiled by NAHC and its affiliate Home Care Technology Association of America (HCTAA):

FITT Act Introduced

During the National Association for Home Care and Hospice’s annual March on Washington, Senator John Thune (R-SD) and Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) re-introduced legislation to expand the use of telehealth technology under Medicare to reduce hospital re-admissions in rural and underserved communities across the country.

The bipartisan Fostering Independence Through Technology (FITT) Act – S. 596 – would create pilot programs to provide incentives for home health agencies to use remote patient monitoring (RPM) technology to better monitor Medicare beneficiaries, improve health outcomes, and reduce Medicare expenditures.

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