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  NAHC Report: Issue# 2623, 3/16/2015
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House of Representative Leadership Working on Permanent SGR FIX: Home Health and Hospice Impact
CMS Revises Medicare Revalidation Policies
For Your Information: Advocacy in your Pocket: The Ins, Outs & Power of NAHC’s New Legislative Action Center
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House of Representative Leadership Working on Permanent SGR FIX: Home Health and Hospice Impact

Late last week, the leadership of the House of Representatives took significant steps towards a bipartisan bill that would replace the Medicare payment model for physician services, the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR), with a payment system focused on value and outcomes. The SGR problem has plagued Congress for years, resulting in multiple “patches” the cost of which has been borne by providers and beneficiaries. The permanent reform package is still very fluid, but it likely will include complete SGR reforms, a series of Medicare payment extenders such as outpatient therapy limits, the so-called PIMA bill on program integrity, and the Medicaid CHIP program extension. The price tag is estimated to be from $200 to $210 billion over a ten year budget.

The most important development in the multi-year attempts to replace SGR is the apparent agreement to offset the cost of the SGR reform with only $70-80 billion in other Medicare program changes. NAHC has learned that the offsets are coming from both beneficiaries and providers of services. On the beneficiary side, the changes would include increased costs for Medicare enrollment through means testing of premiums along with restrictions on first-dollar payment of deductibles and copayments through Medigap policies.

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CMS Revises Medicare Revalidation Policies

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued change Request (CR) 9011 which updates the Medicare Program Integrity Manual on policies related to provider and supplier revalidations.

Sections 15.29.1-15.29.10 of the manual are new and include policies that outline the process and timing for revalidations and subsequent deactivations.

According to the revised policy, CMS will request that providers respond to a revalidation request within 60 days of sending the revalidation letter. If there is no response by day 60, the contractor is to contact the provider between day 60-70. The contractor will make two attempts to contact the provider by telephone. A no answer does not count as a contact, but the contractor may leave a voice message if a phone number is left for a contact directly at the contractor site.

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Advocacy in your Pocket: The Ins, Outs & Power of NAHC’s New Legislative Action Center

NAHC’s new Legislative Action Center combines the power to reach decision makers via their social networks with the convenience of taking action right from your smart phone or tablet. With close to 100% of Congress on Facebook and Twitter, home care and hospice advocates can extend their reach and scope like never before.  Traditional email messages, as well as Twitter, Facebook, and live phone calls are all available in one easy to navigate, interactive platform. Learn how easy it is to become an even more engaged and passionate advocate at the push of a button.

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.

 

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