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NAHC Report: Issue# 2397, 3/21/2014
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Bipartisan, Bicameral Effort Underway to Advance Medicare Post-Acute Reform
Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office Releases FY 2013 Report to Congress
For Your Information: Stay Connected with the March on Washington through Social Media
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Bipartisan, Bicameral Effort Underway to Advance Medicare Post-Acute Reform
House Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committees Release Draft Legislation to reform post-acute care; NAHC submitted proposals to the Committees last summer offering the home health and hospice perspective

Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) and Ranking Member Sandy Levin (D-MI) along with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-UT) released a discussion draft titled, Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation Act of 2014 (IMPACT Act of 2014).  The IMPACT Act of 2014 aims to update Medicare payments to post-acute care (PAC) providers by focusing on more accountable care, and moving towards more of a quality-driven PAC benefit.  The draft legislation is intended to serve as the core building block for future Medicare PAC reforms between the House and Senate Committees that have jurisdiction over Medicare policy.

Last year, Committee leaders invited interested stakeholders to submit ideas on how to strengthen post-acute care (PAC), a variety of health care services that support a patient's continued recovery from a serious illness.  Post-acute care includes services in Long Term Care Hospitals (LTCHs), Inpatient Rehabilitation Facilities (IRFs), Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs), and Home Health Agencies (HHAs). The resounding theme from the more than 70 letters received was the need for standardized post-acute assessment data across Medicare PAC provider settings. NAHC submitted extensive comments and recommendations on post-acute care reforms.

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Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office Releases FY 2013 Report to Congress

On March 13, the Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (MMCO CMS) released its Fiscal Year 2013 Report to Congress (the Report). The Report discussed key developments from MMCO CMS, as well as its legislative recommendations. The National Council on Medicaid Home Care – a NAHC affiliate - discusses the highlights of this Report, below:

Legislative Recommendations

Expand PACE to individuals between ages 21 and 55. As previously stated in the President’s March 4 budget proposal for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for Fiscal Year 2015 (the Budget Proposal), the Report recommended to expand the Program for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) to those aged 21 through 55. PACE is a rebalancing program that provides community based long-term services and supports (LTSS) to dual eligibles via an interdisciplinary team. The Budget Proposal projected that this would have no budgetary impact.

Analysis. The Council supports continued efforts at rebalancing, as evidenced in the president’s recent budget proposal, including not only the proposal to expand PACE, but to expand Money Follows the Person (MFP) and to provide HCBS to children eligible for psychiatric residential treatment facilities.

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Stay Connected with the March on Washington through Social Media

The Home Care and Hospice community is at a critical point as new rules are being considered on Capitol Hill that could affect how home care and hospice organizations operate and pose a significant challenge to the mission to serve America’s aged, disabled, and ill.

Join NAHC, your peers and colleagues at this year’s March on Washington to make home care and hospice the center of health care in our country.

This year it is easier than ever to get involved and stay connected during the March on Washington through NAHC’s Facebook page and Twitter feed. Keep checking NAHC’s social media pages for real-time updates and reports from this year’s March on Washington.

NAHC Members are also encouraged to share their stories, thoughts and photos via NAHC’s Facebook page and Twitter accounts during the March, and to use the #MoW2014 when discussing this year’s March on Washington.

To register to attend this year’s March on Washington, please click here.

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