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:: NAHC Report
NAHC Report: Issue# 2423, 5/6/2014
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Face-to-Face Rule Advocacy: An Update
CMS Announces ICD-10 Implementation Date
For Your Information: NAHC Hosts Free May 12 Teleconference on the Proposed FY2015 Hospice Payment Regulation

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Face-to-Face Rule Advocacy: An Update

Industry concerns with the Medicare home health face-to-face physician encounter requirements continue to mount as Medicare’s various contractors expand their respective post-payment reviews of claims. In late March, the NAHC Board of Directors approved the filing of a lawsuit challenging the requirement that physicians provide sufficient narratives on a patient’s homebound status and need for skilled care.

The lawsuit is ready to go. The intention is to file it in Federal District Court in Washington, D.C. with NAHC as the named plaintiff having “associational standing” to bring the case on behalf of its members. Three claims are included in the lawsuit:

1.) CMS does not have the authority to require the physician narratives as the authorizing statute passed by Congress only requires that a physician document that the encounter occurred;

2.) To the extent that CMS can require the narratives, the Constitution and Medicare law require CMS to promulgate standards for compliance that affected parties can understand and meet; and

3.) Medicare cannot deny a claim solely on the basis of the face-to-face encounter documentation, instead the whole record must be considered.

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CMS Announces ICD-10 Implementation Date

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has officially announced that ICD-10 will be implemented on October 1, 2015. Additionally, CMS announced that the end-to-end testing scheduled for July has ben cancelled.

The announcement does not come as a surprise, since the legislation prohibited CMS from transitioning to ICD-10 prior to October 1, 2015. The National Association for Home Care & Hospice fully expected CMS to implement ICD-10 as soon as permitted by statute.

CMS has not commented on the implementation date for the OASIS C 1. However, now that CMS has announced the implementation date for the ICD-10, plans for the OASIS C1 should be forth coming.


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NAHC Hosts Free May 12 Teleconference on the Proposed FY2015 Hospice Payment Regulation

What: A free teleconference. The National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) and its affiliate Hospice Association of America will host a free member teleconference to highlight issues of critical importance for the hospice community.

When: The teleconference will take place Monday, May 12, from 1:00 p.m. EST to 2:00 p.m. EST.

The number to call in US/CAN toll free is: 1.888.631.5928 and the passcode is: 343751.

Why: As part of the proposed FY2015 Hospice Payment Regulation, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is planning a number of regulatory changes that will impact hospice providers. Perhaps even more importantly, as part of the regulation’s discussion of hospice payment reform and coordination of Part D benefits, CMS is sending a strong signal that it intends to tighten oversight of hospice agencies and more clearly define the “bundle” of services that must be provided under the hospice benefit. As part of the call, presenters will discuss the broad range of issues addressed as part of the proposed rule, and outline their implications for hospice policy and practice.

Who is conducting the seminar: Val J. Halamandaris, President of NAHC; Theresa Forster, Vice President for Hospice Policy and Programs; Katie Wehri, Hospice Regulatory and Operations Specialist; and Bill Dombi, Executive Director, Home Care & Hospice Financial Managers Association.

Who may participate: NAHC members. Please email Mike Wittke at to reserve your place on the call. The first 500 people will be guaranteed a place.

Will questions be allowed: Yes. Questions from participants will be received 24-hours in advance or submitted while the teleconference is live on the date of the broadcast. Send questions to Barbara Woolley, at

Will the teleconference be recorded: Yes, there will be a recording of the teleconference. Highlights of the event will also appear in NAHC Report, NAHC’s daily electronic newsletter, and in CARING, its monthly magazine.

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