Posts by Amy Baxter:

  • Care Workforce is More Educated, But Wages Remain Stagnant

    Jun 28 2018

    The care workforce, including senior care in the home, is in high demand, and workers are becoming more educated and experienced in their careers. Compared to past decades, they’re becoming older, more diverse and increasingly male, too. While the dynamics of the care workforce continue to shift, low and falling wages may be holding back Read More

  • Fraud Watch: Caris to Pay $8.5 Million in False Claims Settlement

    Jun 27 2018

    Caris Settles False Claims Act Lawsuit for $8.5 Million Caris Healthcare, L.P. and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Caris Healthcare, LLC, have agreed to pay $8.5 million to settle allegations they violated the False Claims Act by knowingly submitting false claims and retaining overpayments for patients who were ineligible for the Medicare hospice benefit because they were Read More

  • Rhode Island Secures Rate Escalators for Medicaid Home Care Program

    Jun 26 2018

    Home care providers in the state of Rhode Island have secured a much-needed Medicaid rate increase for the home care and hospice program. The 2019 state budget includes a 10% unencumbered increase for Medicaid fee-for-service personal care attendant services and a 29% increase for Medicaid FFS skilled nursing, therapeutic care and hospice, both effective July 1, Read More

  • NY Times: Humana Wants to ‘Own the Home’

    Jun 25 2018

    Insurance giant Humana (NYSE: HUM) is about to become the nation’s largest hospice provider. Specifically, Humana is acquiring a stake in the home health and hospice business of Kindred Healthcare (NYSE: KND) as part of a joint venture with two private equity firms. In addition to Kindred, Humana is buying hospice provider Curo for $1.4 billion, Read More

  • Must-Read News: Half of Visiting Nurses Experienced Harassment

    Jun 24 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News readers. See what headlines caught our eye and keep reading to see our top posts from last week. First up, a survey from Japan revealed that more than half of all visiting nurses have experienced some sort of harassment when going into patients’ homes. When asked whether they had experienced Read More

  • Walgreens Teams Up With Humana in Senior Care Clinics

    Jun 21 2018

    Insurance company Humana (NYSE: HUM) is partnering up with pharmacy retail business Walgreens Boots Alliance in a new pilot deal to operate senior-focused primary care clinics. The deal will establish the clinics inside two Walgreens stores in Kansas City, Missouri, operated by Partners in Primary Care, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Humana. The venture could also Read More

  • Candid Conversations Reveal Home Health is a Top Investment Target

    Jun 21 2018

    Health care provider organizations are looking to make more investments in home health compared to other service lines, according to a recent report. As the health care system pushes toward value-based care over traditional fee-for-service models, 44% of health care organizations surveyed said they’d invest most in home health care, the report, Candid Conversations on Elder Read More

  • Home Health Agency Wins Payment Fight With CMS in ZPIC Audit

    Jun 20 2018

    A home health agency will be paid for services following a court win that prevents the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) from withholding and recouping payments—at least temporarily. A judge granted the home health agency’s temporary restraining order motion in the case, Family Rehab., Inc. v. Azar, which will temporarily ensure payments are not Read More

  • Hospices Taking on a Bigger Role in the Opioid Crisis Response

    Jun 19 2018

    The hospice industry has made it well known it can play a bigger part in addressing the national opioid crisis, but the role of hospices are playing may already be broader than some think. Hospice organizations are frequently acting as a first line of support for families and loved ones of those lost to addiction Read More

  • VA Will Maintain In-Home Care for Veteran Despite Caregiver Shortage

    Jun 18 2018

    The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will provide in-home health care for an Oregon veteran after Michael Williamson sued the agency for notifying him his care was ending, the Associated Press reported. A VA contract company notified him his care of nearly 20 years would end after it couldn’t find caregivers to provide the Read More

  • Must-Read News: Financial Literacy Tied to Lower ER Rates

    Jun 15 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News audience. Get a jump-start on your week with our must-read news. See what headlines caught our eye around the web and keep reading to see our top stories from last week. A new study found that older adults with higher financial literacy tend to have lower hospitalization rates. The Read More

  • Hospice Provider Settles Overbilling for $1 Million Following Exec Pay Raises

    Jun 15 2018

    Trustbridge Inc., a West Palm Beach, Fla.-based nonprofit hospice provider, settled an excessive billing case with the government for $1 million at the same time it was paying executives exorbitant pay raises, The Palm Beach Post reported. The company is the parent of Hospice of Palm Beach County, Hospice By the Sea and Hospice of Broward County, Read More

  • Why Medicare Advantage May Be a Small Opportunity for Home Care

    Jun 14 2018

    Home care providers are juiced up over the promise of Medicare Advantage plans taking on non-skilled in-home supports as a supplemental benefit, but the opportunity may be smaller than some think. Not only will home care providers likely not see significant changes to MA plans in 2019, but the next few years could be a Read More

  • Amazon Business Streamlines Supply Chain for Home Health

    Jun 12 2018

    E-commerce retail giant Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) is making waves into the health care space, but the company has also been building a means to service providers in a more traditional way.  Amazon Business, the retailer’s B2B service line, is shaping the supply chain process for health care providers by enabling them to order in a familiar way online. After Read More

  • New York Overbilled Medicaid Home Care Program by $75 Million

    Jun 07 2018

    New York’s Medicaid agency claimed reimbursement for some in-home care services that were not in accordance with Medicaid requirements, to the tune of $74.8 million, according to the Office of Inspector General. The state did not provide documentation of services claimed, claimed reimbursement for services that were not authorized or supported, and for claims which Read More

  • LHC Group, Amedisys Execs Shrug Off Pre-Claim Proposal

    Jun 06 2018

    The home health care industry was rocked when the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced it was bringing back the pre-claim review demonstration at the end of May. The agency proposed reviving the model in the wake of a report urging more pre-claim, or prior authorization, demonstrations across the health care space from Read More

  • Comfort Keepers Turns to ClearCare to Seize Medicare Advantage Opportunity

    Jun 05 2018

    When the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced it was allowing non-skilled in-home supports to become a supplemental benefit in Medicare Advantage plans next year, it was evident new solutions would be needed to facilitate the addition. Now, technology providers and in-home care agencies are seeing opportunities to work together to make inroads Read More

  • LHC Group CEO Frustrated by Managed Care Reimbursement

    Jun 05 2018

    LHC Group (Nasdaq: LHCG) has long been considered the home health industry leader when it comes to making inroads with hospitals and health systems thanks to its joint venture strategy. However, despite a growing managed care population in the broad health care landscape, low reimbursement models will continue to challenge home health providers, according to Read More

  • Amedisys Buys Back $178 Million in Stock

    Jun 04 2018

    Baton Rouge-based Amedisys Inc. (Nasdaq: AMED), one of the nation’s largest home health care providers, has purchased more than 2.4 million of its common shares for approximately $178 million from KKR (NYSE: KKR). The shares represent half the holdings of Amedisys by KKR, a global investment firm based in New York City. The shares were Read More

  • 2017 Hospice and Home Health Medicare Utilization Trends

    Jun 04 2018

    From 2016 to 2017, the home health and hospice markets both experienced growth, with millions of more Medicare beneficiaries utilizing these services, according to year-end data from Excel Health. The data, which is based on the most recent Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B claims data, show there were 57.7 million Medicare beneficiaries residing in Read More

  • Must-Read News: Recapping New Pre-Claim Proposal

    Jun 03 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News audience. Start your week with our must-read news and see what headlines caught our eye across the web. Keep reading to see our top stories from last week. A home health aide became a hero after alerting resident of a multi-family home in Lynn, Massachusetts, that the residence was Read More

  • Fraud Watch: Michigan Agency Owner Guilty in $8 Million Fraud Case

    May 30 2018

    Michigan Agency Owner Pleads Guilty in $8 Million Fraud Scheme Zahir Shah, 48, of West Bloomfield, Michigan, pleaded guilty to fraud charges for his role in a scheme involving approximately $8 million in fraudulent Medicare claims for home health services procured through illegal kickbacks, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ). Shah pleaded guilty to Read More

  • Under New Ownership, HomeWell Senior Care Ready for Rocket Growth

    May 28 2018

    Texas-based HomeWell Senior Care, a private duty home care franchise company, has a new owner with a background in hotels—and big plans to ramp up growth. Bruce Haase has acquired a majority stake ownership in the company for an undisclosed amount, while founder Joshua Hoffman retains one-third ownership. The company, which was founded in 2002, Read More

  • Must-Read News: Giving Hospice Accolades

    May 25 2018

    After a long weekend, get a jump-start on your week with our Must-Read News flash. See what headlines caught our eye around the web. Keep reading to see our top stories on all things home health and home care from last week. The royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle was a highlight of Read More

  • UK Home Care Startup Raises $17 Million

    May 24 2018

    A technology-forward home care startup based in the United Kingdom has raised $17 million in a Series A funding. The business, which launched in November 2016, has raised approximately $21 million to date. London-based Cera, which was recently embroiled in an online fake review scandal, will use the funding to push out its new CeraFlex service Read More

  • Amedisys Moves to Standardize Clinical Practices Across Service Lines

    May 23 2018

    To be a breakout partner in the evolving health care landscape, clinical excellence is key, which is why home health care providers are continuing to spend time and resources bulking up their performance. For Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based Amedisys (Nasdaq: AMED), focusing on improving clinical care has boosted its star ratings on Home Health Compare over Read More

  • GAO Recommends Extending Prior Authorization

    May 22 2018

    The home health care industry rejoiced after the prior authorization demonstration from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) was put on hold indefinitely in 2017. However, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) is urging CMS to extend prior authorization across the general health care space, according to a recent report. The payment approach requires health Read More

  • Honor Raises $50 Million to Target Hundreds of New Partners

    May 22 2018

    California-based Honor has raised another $50 million is a Series C funding, bringing the home care startup’s total funding to $115 million. The funding comes as the company has pivoted its business, from operating as a private duty home care provider to becoming a technology and operations partner for a growing network of in-home care Read More

  • Home Care Providers Face Federal Lawsuits Over Labor Violations

    May 21 2018

    Several home care providers are facing lawsuits from the Department of Labor (DOL) for allegedly failing to pay workers overtime or minimum hourly wages, according to Bloomberg BNA. The lawsuits come just a few years after the in-home care industry was hit with a new regulation that ensured workers were protected by minimum and overtime wages. Read More

  • Must-Read News: Health Care Employment Rises

    May 20 2018

    Start your week with our must-read news—see what caught our eye around the web, and keep reading to see our top stories from last week. The unemployment rate in the United States recently reached just 3.9%—a tight labor market. In April, the share of new health care jobs also reached a new high, with 24,400 Read More

  • New Hometeam CEO Leads Dual-Eligible Business Plan

    May 17 2018

    New York-based home care startup company Hometeam has named Randy Klein as its new CEO. Klein takes the helm just several weeks after former CEO and founder Josh Bruno stepped down. The leadership change comes after Hometeam, which provides services in New York and New Jersey and has raised more than $43 million in investment Read More

  • Judge Overturns California Aid-in-Dying Law

    May 16 2018

    Roughly two years later the End of Life Option Act went into effect in the state of California, a state judge overturned the law, declaring it unconstitutional. The Act enabled terminally ill patients to utilize medical aid in dying as a palliative care option to end suffering and peacefully end their lives. Six other states—Colorado, Read More

  • Top Payment Scrutiny Areas in Hospice Care

    May 16 2018

    As more government agencies leverage data analysis and tracking to monitor billing in the home health and hospice space, providers are seeing heightened scrutiny across billing practices. From time to time, everyday mistakes in documentation and challenges with compliance can lead to bigger problems—even when providers think they are doing everything right. In 2015, hospice Read More

  • CMS Launches Rural Health Strategy with Telehealth Aims

    May 15 2018

    The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced a new rural health strategy, targeting Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries located in rural America. One of the strategy’s aims is to boost telehealth and telemedicine, a growing area of in-home based care. “For the first time, CMS is organizing and focusing our efforts to apply Read More

  • Longer Home Health Visits Tied to Lower Hospital Rates

    May 14 2018

    Home health care visits that are longer by just one minute may be tied to lower hospital readmission rates. That’s the key finding from a recent study from the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). “We obviously see an effect,” Guy David, associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and author of the research, told Home Health Care News. “Shorter visits Read More

  • Home Care is a Top Franchise Under $150,000

    May 11 2018

    Home care franchises are continually making the ranking of the fastest-growing and hottest businesses around the nation. And for franchise businesses that can be started for under $150,000, a number of home care providers have made Entrepreneur magazine’s list. The score’s are based on the Entrepreneur’s 2018 Franchise 500 ranking, which the publisher has compiled Read More

  • Medicare Advantage Provider Clover Health Adds In-Home Primary Care Program

    May 10 2018

    San Francisco-based Clover Health, a health care technology company and Medicare Advantage insurer, has launched an in-home primary care program that will include gene testing for medication management. The program, which already has approximately 500 members in New Jersey, uses genomic testing integration capabilities from YouScript, a clinical decision support tool for medication management. Clover Read More

  • Best and Worst States for Retirement

    May 09 2018

    Seniors have their choice when it comes to where to retire, and not all states are equal. With health care costs ranking as a top concern among retirees, some states are clear champions for seniors. Kiplinger ranked states based on several factors, including living expenses, tax burdens, health care costs, household incomes, poverty rates and Read More

  • Amedisys Bullish on Home Health Comeback, Value-Based Purchasing Progress

    May 08 2018

    In the first quarter of 2018, Amedisys Inc. (Nasdaq: AMED) saw its margins swell to their highest level since 2015. And its home health services line improved, despite lower reimbursement rates for the space. Baton Rouge-based Amedisys beat analyst expectations for the quarter, and leadership explained its margin increase as coming, in part, from greater Read More

  • Opioids, Star Ratings Among Top Regulatory Issues in Hospice

    May 07 2018

    The hospice care space has become the hot acquisition target of the moment, in part because buyers see high margins and fewer regulatory hurdles when compared against home health care. However, that does not mean hospice is entirely spared from new and evolving hurdles and regulatory obligations. From opioid-related legislation to forthcoming Hospice Compare changes and Read More

  • Where the Home Health Aide Shortage Will Hit Hardest by 2025

    May 06 2018

    The shortage of home health aides in the industry is no secret, but the exact pace of demand will far exceed the supply of health care workers over the next few years, according to a new report from Mercer. The number of new job openings for home health aides by 2025 is expected to reach Read More

  • LHC Group Not Backing Off M&A After Mega-Merger

    May 03 2018

    Fresh off its mega-merger with Almost Family, home health care giant LHC Group (Nasdaq: LHCG) is still eyeing big mergers and acquisitions opportunities in 2018. “We might be tempted to sit back and rest on our laurels, but that’s not in our DNA,” CEO Keith Myers said Thursday during the company’s first quarter earnings call. Read More

  • New Long-Term Care Medicare Benefit Proposed

    May 02 2018

    A newly proposed Medicare benefit would extend services to eligible beneficiaries for long-term care. The proposal was within a discussion draft of a bill by Representative Frank Pallone (D-NJ), released at a Wednesday roundtable discussion with aging and disability advocates. The proposal, The Medicare Long-Term Care Services and Supports Act of 2018, would establish a Read More

  • Humana to Address Social Determinants of Health in New MA Benefits

    May 02 2018

    In the midst of two major takeovers in the home health and hospice space, insurance giant Humana (NYSE: HUM) is working on expanding its Medicare Advantage benefits. Just last month, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced an expansion of supplemental benefits for MA plans in 2019, including the addition of non-skilled in-home Read More

  • How the Hospice Benefit Could Be Redefined

    May 02 2018

    As recent changes across the health care system over the last few years indicate that person-centered, interdisciplinary care can improve clinical outcomes, boost patient satisfaction and potentially lower overall costs, hospice care could see an evolution ahead. Hospice has become known as the first truly interdisciplinary benefit, bringing together many types of care under one Read More

  • Clients Hiring Away Caregivers is a Growing Threat to Agencies

    May 01 2018

    As the demand for home care continues to grow, a shortage of workers in the space is putting the squeeze on many agencies. And one rising threat is the number of caregivers who are turning their backs on being employed by a traditional agency, working directly for a family instead. With median turnover in the Read More

  • Fraud Watch: Miami Home Health Owners Indicted in Scheme

    Apr 30 2018

    Three Miami Home Health Agency Owners Charged in Fraud Scheme Three Miami-area home health care agency owners were charged in an indictment for their alleged participation in a health care fraud scheme involving a now-defunct business, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced in March. Ailin Consuelo Rodriguez Sigler, 39; Ziola C. Rios, 57; and Thomas Read More

  • Amazon Employees Reportedly Studied Aging on Road Trip

    Apr 29 2018

    Online retail giant Amazon.com (Nasdaq: AMZN) reportedly got a crash course in aging during a multi-city bus tour that included input from senior living innovator Bill Thomas. The bus trip provides even more evidence that the massive online marketplace is looking to transform the age-related services landscape. Most recently, the company was rumored to be developing a “top-secret” Read More

  • Encompass Goes Its Own Way Amid Major Industry Consolidation

    Apr 29 2018

    Fresh off a recently announced acquisition of a regional provider, Encompass Health (NYSE: EHC) is doubling down on its organic growth to be a competitor in the tightening home health care space. Encompass, an inpatient rehabilitation, home health and hospice care services provider based in Birmingham, Alabama, posted strong revenue growth for the first quarter, Read More

  • CMS Proposes $340 Million Increase in Hospice Payments for 2019

    Apr 27 2018

    Hospice providers could be getting a 1.8%, or $340 million, bump in reimbursements in fiscal year 2019, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed Friday afternoon. The proposal is higher than the 1% increase given to providers in 2018. The 1.8% payment update is based on an estimated 2.9% inpatient hospital market basket Read More

  • ProMedica to Blur Acute, Post-Acute Lines with ManorCare Deal

    Apr 26 2018

    The acquisition of HCR ManorCare, the nation’s second-largest skilled nursing provider, by nonprofit health system ProMedica falls in line with a growing trend of payors and providers building out their care continuum, with one goal being to treat patients more frequently in lower-cost care settings like home health care. On late Wednesday night, ProMedica announced Read More

  • Home Health Aide is Fastest Growing Job Since Great Recession

    Apr 25 2018

    Home health aide is among the fastest growing jobs since the economy has recovered from the Great Recession. From 2007 to 2017, 296,952 home health aide jobs were added—a 46% increase, according to recently released data from CareerBuilder. The pattern of growth has been well documented over the years, driven in large part by the aging Read More

  • Hospice Carve-In for Medicare Advantage is ‘Inevitable’

    Apr 24 2018

    While much of the health care system is moving more Medicare beneficiaries into managed care, hospice continues to live on its own island. That’s because hospice is not allowed as a benefit in Medicare Advantage plans. “What the MA structure creates is a bifurcation,” Julia Driessen, assistant professor of health policy and management at the Read More

  • Must-Read News: Hometeam Leadership Shakeup

    Apr 22 2018

    Happy Monday, home health care news readers. Kick off your week with our must-read news, including stories that caught our eye around the web. Keep reading to see our top stories from last week. Last week, it was announced that former first lady Barbara Bush had passed away at the age of 92. In the Read More

  • Managed Care Plans Forced to Limit Home Care Contracts in New York

    Apr 19 2018

    Managed care insurers in one of the largest states in the country are facing tough new limits on how many home care providers they can contract with. New regulations in New York will impact licensed home care services agencies (LHCSAs), placing some restrictions on the state’s managed care providers as the number of enrollees continues to Read More

  • Home Care Patients Are Likely Down with Dope

    Apr 19 2018

    More in-home care patients are probably lighting up and utilizing cannabis, as the number of older Americans that believe medical marijuana is effective for pain relief, appetite loss and anxiety has risen. Four out of five respondents between the age of 50 and 80 said they support allowing medical marijuana if it’s recommended by a Read More

  • Median Home Care Turnover Hit 66.7% in 2017

    Apr 19 2018

    While just about every provider in the home care space has struggled with turnover, lower wages are tied to higher turnover rates, a new report confirms. The median caregiver turnover rate across the industry was 66.7% in 2017, the highest rate since 2013, according to the 9th Annual Edition of the Home Care Benchmarking Study Read More

  • Home Health, Hospice M&A Spikes at Start of 2018

    Apr 18 2018

    The home health sector is on a hot streak. In the first quarter of 2018 there were 21 publicly announced transactions in the space, according to data from Irving Levin Associates as reported by HealthCareMandA.com. The number of transactions was 67% higher than the 14 deals seen in the fourth quarter of 2017, and signals Read More

  • Griswold Adds Predictive Analysis to Hire the Right Caregivers

    Apr 18 2018

    In the arms race for caregivers, one major home care franchisor is beefing up its arsenal with new technology to streamline the recruiting process. Philadelphia-based Griswold Home Care is rolling out a predictive analytics tool that will help assess caregivers that may be the best fit for the company, as its franchisees continue to grow and Read More

  • UnitedHealth Group Encouraged by More MA Benefits

    Apr 17 2018

    In-home care providers aren’t the only players looking forward to expanded Medicare Advantage (MA) benefits in 2019. Insurers that offer MA plans—notably behemoth UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH)—are also looking ahead and seeing the addition of more benefits as a major bonus. Minnetonka, Minnesota-based UnitedHealth Group offers medical benefits through its businesses UnitedHealthcare and Optum, which also provides some Read More

  • Transactions: BrightStar Acquires Iowa Agency

    Apr 16 2018

    BrightStar Care Acquires HomeChoice Senior Care Chicago-based BrightStar Care, a national in-home care franchise provider, has acquired HomeChoice Senior Care, a home care agency based in Iowa. HomeChoice is operating as BrightStar Care as of April 1. HomeChoice was founded in 2009 and is led by executive director Koleene Herlocker. The company provides non-medical home Read More

  • Must-Read News: Three-Way Merger Deal

    Apr 15 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News readers. As we looked for any hints of spring in Chicago last week—and turned up empty-handed—we kept busy to bring you the latest news in the home health and home care industry. Catch up with our must-read news to see what you might have missed. A new innovation in Read More

  • Independence at Home Saves Medicare 10 Times More than ACOs

    Apr 12 2018

    Home-based primary care is a huge money saver for Medicare, and its advocates are pushing for the Independence at Home (IAH) program to become permanent, with a few changes. IAH is a demonstration project from the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) that is testing the delivery of primary care services at home. Selected Read More

  • Texas Home Health Care Owners Make OIG’s Most Wanted List

    Apr 12 2018

    The Office of Inspector General (OIG) has named a former owner of a Texas-based home health care company, Ebong Aloysius Tilong, among its “most wanted fugitives.” Tilong was indicted on charges of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, health care fraud, conspiracy to pay kickbacks, payment of kickbacks and conspiracy to commit money laundering in Read More

  • 4 Ways Home Health is Readying Itself for a Value-Based Economy

    Apr 11 2018

    Home health care providers are in the midst of a shifting environment and getting on board for ongoing demonstration programs and upcoming regulatory changes. Even with changes at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), home health providers can bet that the momentum to a value-based economy in health care that started from the Affordable Read More

  • Movers & Shakers: VNSNY Announces CEO Change After Contract Failure

    Apr 11 2018

    VNSNY Announces CEO Change The Visiting Nurse Service of New York (VNSNY) announced that Marki Flannery has agreed to return as president and CEO of the association after an agreement on terms for a renewal contract for Dr. Christopher Olivia fell through. Olivia, who served as CEO since 2017, resigned, effective April 9. Flannery joined Read More

  • At-Home Meal Delivery Reduces Hospital Readmission Rates

    Apr 09 2018

    Addressing some of the social determinants of health can boost patient outcomes and help lower overall health care costs. Along these lines, researchers have found that home-delivered meals are a big deterrent to hospital readmissions. Lack of access to nutritious food for people who are dually eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid is a problem Read More

  • ElevatingHome, VNAA Reaffirm Goals as CEO Moorhead Steps Down

    Apr 09 2018

    Tracey Moorhead has resigned as president and CEO of the Visiting Nurse Associations of America (VNAA) and ElevatingHome. Danielle Pierotti, RN, PhD, CENP, vice president of quality and research, has stepped into the role of interim CEO.   VNAA is an industry association and advocacy group for home-based care with a membership base of not-for-profit Read More

  • Must-Read News: HHS Recovered $2.6 Billion From Health Care Fraud

    Apr 08 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News readers. Get caught up on all things home care with our must-read news, and keep reading to see our top stories from last week. On Friday, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) released its annual 2017 fiscal year Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control Program report for 2017, revealing that the Read More

  • Interdisciplinary Approach Elevates Home Health Provider’s Outcomes

    Apr 05 2018

    Home health care is becoming well known for its ability to help reduce rehospitalizations and lower overall health costs. But some high-risk patients are still in danger of a readmission even after a home health discharge. As a result, some providers are working to take care of patients after an episode of home health ends, Read More

  • Kindred Shareholders Approve Acquisition by Humana, PE Firms

    Apr 05 2018

    Kindred Healthcare (NYSE: KND) shareholders approved the sale of the company’s home health and hospice business to insurance giant Humana (NYSE: HUM) and two private equity groups. The approval comes after some contention among shareholders. One investor with a 5.8% stake in Louisville-based Kindred, Brigade Capital, sued to block the merger. The suit was dismissed Read More

  • CMS To Be Flexible in Enforcing Medicaid Home Health Rule

    Apr 05 2018

    A deadline for states to comply with a 2016 Medicaid home health final rule is approaching, but the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) won’t necessarily enforce all compliance areas right away, according to an announcement issued Thursday. The final rule was published on February 2, 2016, with an effective date of July 1, 2016. Read More

  • Managed Care Organization Funds In-Home Behavioral Health Care

    Apr 04 2018

    Behavioral health challenges can compromise the wellbeing of older adults, but few home health care providers have the resources to tackle these issues. However, one senior care organization is treating homebound seniors for anxiety and depression, at no cost to the consumer, in hopes that overall wellness will improve and overall health spending will decrease. SCAN, Read More

  • Buyers Snatch Up Unprofitable Hospices in Hot M&A Market

    Apr 04 2018

    When it comes to mergers and acquisitions, hospice is hot—really hot. In fact, some new buyers entering the market are coming into the space purely because of the tailwinds and strong demographics, even if the operations they purchase aren’t profitable. That’s according to Rich Tinsley, president and CEO of Stoneridge Partners, a health care merger and Read More

  • Johns Hopkins: Most Doctors Spend One Minute Reviewing Home Health Plans

    Apr 03 2018

    Many physicians only spend about one minute reviewing home health care plans, according to a new study from Johns Hopkins University researchers published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. That revelation likely isn’t a shock to home health care providers that deal with getting physicians to sign off on care plans. Communication and care coordination are Read More

  • Movers & Shakers: Interim HealthCare Adds Executives

    Apr 03 2018

    Movers & Shakers is brought to you by the Home Health Care News Job Board. Browse and apply to management and executive home health care jobs and positions from leading professional firms serving the industry.  Employers can post single jobs, purchase job packages or our premium subscription that includes unlimited job posts and editorial coverage for one Read More

  • Addus Enters Two New States with $18.5 Million Arcadia Deal

    Apr 02 2018

    Addus HomeCare Corp. (Nasdaq: ADUS), one of the nation’s largest personal care services providers, has acquired Arcadia Home Care & Staffing, a Southfield, Michigan-based provider of in-home care services. Addus, based in Frisco, Texas, acquired Arcadia for the purchase price of $18.5 million, and the transaction closed on April 1. It was funded from Addus’ Read More

  • Bill to Boost Home Health Over Nursing Homes Fails in Louisiana

    Apr 02 2018

    A bill in Louisiana that would have shifted more patients toward home health care services has failed, The Advocate reported. The state’s Senate Health and Welfare committee rejected legislation that would have lifted some of the cost burden off institutional care in the state toward more access to in-home care services. Compared to most other Read More

  • Must-Read News: Senior Helpers Joins Dementia Village

    Apr 01 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News readers. Kick off your week with our must-read news. Keep reading to see our top stories from last week. In January, Apple announced it formed an agreement with 13 heath systems, some with prestigious centers, that would allow Apple to download electronic health data of those systems’ patients on Read More

  • Home Health and Hospice Admissions, Utilization Trending Up

    Mar 29 2018

    Home health care and hospice admissions and utilization are both on the rise, according to the latest data report from Excel Health. Hospice admissions grew 4.6% from the third quarter of 2016 to the third quarter of 2017, rising to 313,500, according to the report, which is based on 100% of the most recent Medicare Read More

  • Johns Hopkins Studies Broken Communication Between Home Health, Doctors

    Mar 29 2018

    Home health care providers know the struggle of coordinating well with physicians, and research underway could shed light on how communication between the two groups is failing—and what can be done to improve it. Researchers from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore are undertaking a study that will seek to understand how home health care agencies interact Read More

  • Kindred Overcomes Shareholder Suit, Merger Vote Moves Forward

    Mar 28 2018

    A scheduled shareholder vote to sell Kindred Healthcare (NYSE: KND) will move forward after a judge dismissed a lawsuit by a major shareholder. Brigade Capital Management, a New York-based private equity firm with a 5.8% stake in Louisville-based Kindred, sued the health care provider in an attempt to delay or block the vote to sell the Read More

  • Home Care Workers Want to Leave Jobs Despite High Satisfaction

    Mar 28 2018

    Every three months, home health care agencies in Massachusetts are replacing 15 workers on average, according to a new report from the Home Care Aide Council. And it appears that many workers might be leaving despite feeling high job satisfaction. Agencies hire an average of 18 new home care aides per quarter, meaning their net Read More

  • Movers & Shakers: Humana Appoints Regional President

    Mar 27 2018

    Humana Names Former Home Health Exec as Regional President Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) appointed Matt Berger as regional vice president for Humana’s Louisiana and Mississippi Medicare markets, effective March 18. Berger has served in regional finance roles for Humana, including four years as its Medicare Central Division chief financial officer in Louisiana. Prior to joining Read More

  • Senior Helpers to Staff First U.S. Dementia Village

    Mar 26 2018

    A major national home care franchisor has been tapped to staff the first U.S. version of a “dementia village.” Pioneered in the Netherlands, the concept involves the re-creation of a community from the 1950s. Senior Helpers, an in-home care franchise provider with 311 locations, has partnered with George G. Glenner Alzheimer’s Family Centers, Inc., to bring Read More

  • Must-Read News: An ACO Takes on Hospital at Home

    Mar 25 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News readers. After a chilly weekend in our base of Chicago, we’re ready to warm up with the hottest news in home health and home care. Late last week, a home health care worker based in Dallas was charged in the murder of an 81-year-old woman, Fox News reported. Billy Read More

  • Hospice Sees a New Type of Caregiver in ‘Death Doulas’

    Mar 25 2018

    As hospice services are ramping up across the country, some providers are utilizing so-called death doulas as an extra layer of care. Doulas are known most commonly for helping women through the childbirth process, but now doulas are starting to serve the older population at the end of life, the Idaho Statesman recently reported. In Idaho, Read More

  • LHC Group CEO: Almost Family Innovations Division a Merger Bonus

    Mar 25 2018

    As LHC Group (Nasdaq: LHCG) continues to make inroads with partners in the shift to value-based care, a new business segment it is picking up in its merger with Almost Family (Nasdaq: AFAM) could accelerate the process. Lafayette, Louisiana-based LHC Group is acquiring Louisville-based Almost Family in a $2.4 billion deal, and the emerging company Read More

  • Transactions: AccentCare Acquires in Texas

    Mar 22 2018

    AccentCare Acquires Quality Care Services Texas-based AccentCare has expanded its personal care services client base by acquiring Quality Services’ Medicaid attendant care segment, which serves the Beaumont, Texas area. The transaction was effective Feb. 1. The acquired business segment assumed the name of AccentCare’s regional branch in Texas —Texas Home Health. Quality Care Services was Read More

  • Amedisys CEO: We Want to Change the Managed Care Game

    Mar 22 2018

    Amedisys Inc. (Nasdaq: AMED) is eyeing the growing managed care population and is eager to influence how these payers view and reimburse home health providers.   Some of the biggest home health providers—not only Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based Amedisys but also Louisville-based Almost Family (Nasdaq: AFAM) and Lafayette, Louisiana-Based LHC Group (Nasdaq: LHCG)—have made it clear they Read More

  • Amazon, AARP Reveal Possible Collaboration on Tech for Seniors

    Mar 21 2018

    Some of Amazon’s (Nasdaq: AMZN) secretive actions in the health care space have been revealed, after its vice president spoke about meeting with AARP for technology collaborations for seniors, CNBC reported Wednesday. This news comes as home health providers have been closely watching the retail giant, which has been making forays into health care and Read More

  • CMS to Home Health: ‘Sky is Not Falling’ Over Lack of CoP Guidelines

    Mar 21 2018

    While the spotlight across the home health care industry has recently shined on the upcoming payment reform, providers are still grappling with new requirements that went into effect in January—the Conditions of Participation (CoPs). The new CoPs—the standards that agencies must follow to participate in Medicare—were the first update to the requirements in decades. And Read More

  • ElevatingHome CEO: Home Health Deserves More Respect from Payors, Regulators

    Mar 20 2018

    Home health care isn’t getting the full recognition of its value from payers and regulators, according to advocates and stakeholders. That’s why the home health care industry’s newest association is promoting the value of in-home care as a top priority, while also seeking to establish a firm footing almost year after launching. ElevatingHome, which spun Read More

  • ACO Bets Hospital at Home is The Future

    Mar 19 2018

    Accountable care organization Atrius Health is betting big that hospital care will move into the home. To that end, Massachusetts-based Atrius recently partnered with Medically Home Group, a health care technology and service company based in Westport, Connecticut, that recently raised $4 million. As a Pioneer ACO that takes care of more than 740,000 patients Read More

  • Home Health Executives Interpret Payment Reform Proposal

    Mar 18 2018

    When the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 was signed into law in February, a new home health payment system was back on the table. However, language of the bill left some unanswered questions about what the new model will look like. Namely, the legislation outlined “30-day units of service,” which does not make clear if Read More

  • Encompass Expands in Southeast with Camellia Acquisition

    Mar 18 2018

    Encompass Health (NYSE: EHC) is acquiring a Mississippi-based in-home care services provider, Camellia Healthcare, and its affiliated entities. Camellia Healthcare operates a portfolio of home health, hospice and private duty locations in Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and Tennessee, with revenue of approximately $78 million in 2017. The deal will push Encompass Health, the nation’s fourth largest Read More

  • Must-Read News: Kindred Deal Back on Track

    Mar 18 2018

    Happy Monday, Home Health Care News readers. Get a jump-start on your week ahead by getting caught up on headlines that caught our eye, and review our top stories from last week. At top of mind for many in the industry is the latest on the acquisition of Kindred Health at Home (NYSE: KND) by Read More

  • MedPAC Recommends 5% Home Health Payment Cut to Congress

    Mar 15 2018

    The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) submitted its Medicare payment policy report to Congress, recommending a 5% payment rate cute to the home health care industry for 2019. The recommendation is in line with prior reports from MedPAC, which is tasked with advising Congress on the administration of the Medicare program. The commission also recommended Read More

  • Largest Home Health Nonprofit Pilots Avatar Tech for Rehab

    Mar 14 2018

    The Visiting Nurse Service of New York (VNSNY) isn’t yet using robots to administer care, but the New York-based home health care agency is about to start offering some of its patients an innovative rehabilitation program. The tech utilizes avatars, which are cartoon-like personas, that will guide patients through on-demand physical therapy at home and offer Read More

  • Supply-Demand Gap Worsening for Home Health Workforce

    Mar 14 2018

    The caregiver shortage across the in-home care industry is no secret, but a new report sheds light on the depth of the skills gap of available workers. The U.S. labor market is as tight as ever since the Great Recession, according to a report prepared for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation by Burning Glass Technologies. With Read More

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