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  NAHC Report: Issue# 2604, 2/12/2015
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ARTICLE ARCHIVES MEMBER RESOURCES eNEWSLETTERS CARING STORE
CMS Holds First Open Door Forum for the Face-to-Face Voluntary Templates
Role Nurses Play in Addressing the Looming Demand for Care as Americans Age
For Your Information: Medicare under the Microscope
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CMS Holds First Open Door Forum for the Face-to-Face Voluntary Templates

On February 11, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) held the first in a series of Special Open Door Forum (ODF) calls on the voluntary electronic and paper face-to-face (F2F) encounter templates they developed. CMS released the templates to the public on January 30, and announced their intent to conduct an ODF to further discuss the templates with stakeholders.

During the call, CMS briefly reviewed the revised regulation for the F2F encounter that eliminated the narrative requirement for the encounter. Since the narrative is longer required, CMS will look at other documentation within the physician’s record to determine a beneficiary’s eligibility for Medicare home health, such as functional status to support homebound.

The templates are an attempt by CMS to assist physicians in documenting patient conditions and characteristics on a progress note that support the eligibility for Medicare home health services.  Both templates run five pages long and contain a combination of narrative and check box responses. The templates also contain skip patterns so that the entire progress note may not need to be completed  The electronic template is a revision of a previous version that was part of project within CMS and the Office of the National Coordinator. That project was placed on hold in mid 2014, and resumed several weeks ago. However, CMS admitted that they had never attempted to develop a paper template before. During the question and answer portion of the call CMS only entertained inquiries regarding the templates and did respond to questions on the F2F regulation. Many callers expressed concern with the length of the templates and the need to still provide a narrative that describes why the patient is need of skilled service and reason for homebound.

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Role Nurses Play in Addressing the Looming Demand for Care as Americans Age
New policy brief from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation finds that Nurses are creating innovative long-term services and supports that improve quality of life for older Americans

Within four decades, as many as 84 million Americans will be 65 or older — twice the current number of seniors, and almost 20 percent of the total U.S. population. The great majority of these Americans will likely seek assistance in maintaining their health and well-being, making it essential that the nation develop effective and affordable ways to provide the long-term services and supports (LTSS) they need.

The latest issue of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Charting Nursing’s Future (CNF) policy brief series offers ample evidence that nurses have developed creative, sustainable, and compassionate ways to care for people who, because of disability, frailty, or illness, cannot care for themselves. In a variety of ways, nurses are making it easier for older, chronically ill individuals to stay healthier, remain in the community with their families, and avoid developing expensive debilitating conditions. The brief describes a number of innovative LTSS programs, as well as their collective potential to reshape the future of care for older Americans.

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Medicare under the Microscope

Does it seem like you’re jumping through hoops as you face more and more costly regulations? Are you feeling the pinch as reimbursement for your home care and hospice services goes down. You may face more pain since Congress has cost-saving in mind as it considers the federal budget. Some lawmakers are pushing to cut Medicare more and restructure it to reduce federal outlays. Their plans include merging Parts A and B, along with imposing uniform copay and deductible requirements — all of which would hurt the service you give your Medicare patients. What can be done? Join as we give the problem a closer look.

Conference Program
You may view the conference program here.

Registration Information
You may register using the Online Registration or print the Downloadable Registration Form and fax it to the phone number on the form. You may also call 202-547-7424 and register by phone.

Hotel Information: The Mayflower Renaissance Hotel, Washington, DC 
NAHC is hosting the 2015 March on Washington Conference in the splendid city of Washington, DC. Join us as we pursue a historic mission to make home care and hospice the center of health care in our country.

Standard room rate per night: $318.00 + tax (rate available until Friday, February 27, 2015)

To book hotel rooms online, click Online Reservations.

Number to call for room reservations: Toll Free: 1-877-212-5752

When making hotel reservations, please tell the agent that you are with the National Association for Home Care & Hospice March on Washington Room Block.

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