CMS Launches ‘Unprecedented’ Hospital-at-Home Strategy to Manage Latest COVID-19 Surge

In an effort to increase hospital capacity amid the current COVID-19 surge, the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Wednesday announced “unprecedented” flexibilities around providing hospital-level care for patients in their homes. Similar to CMS’s recent allowances surrounding telehealth, the agency’s latest efforts are focused on lifting barriers that could potentially hinder […]

CMS to Retire Home Health Compare Next Month

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is moving forward with its plan to retire the old Home Health Compare in favor of a new, multi-setting tool known simply as “Care Compare.” By Dec. 1, CMS will move away from Home Health Compare, Nursing Home Compare, Hospital Compare and the five similar online […]

LHC Group CEO Keith Myers: Change in Washington Won’t Derail ‘Incredible’ Home Health Opportunity

Keith Myers has seen his fair share of change in Washington, D.C. Since co-founding the business with his wife, Ginger, in 1994, Myers has helped lead LHC Group Inc. (Nasdaq: LHCG) through parts of five presidencies as chairman and CEO. A new administration with Joe Biden in the White House would make that six. Although […]

An ‘Awkward Transition Year’: Why 2021 Will Look Different in Home Health with New RAP Adjustments

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued its final 2021 home health payment rule in late October. When it came out, some providers were less than pleased. On one hand, the Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) wasn’t substantially altered to balance out its flawed behavioral assumptions. On another, there are also a few […]

CMS: Home Health Improper Payments Down by $5.9B Since 2016

Home health providers continue to make serious progress in reducing improper payments under fee-for-service Medicare, the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced Monday. Since 2016, improper payments to home health providers have dropped by an estimated $5.9 billion, according to CMS. All improper payments in fee-for-service Medicare are down by an estimated […]

How TRU Community Care Used Telehealth to Revamp Its Palliative Care Program

Despite a vital need for palliative care in community settings, home-based care providers have been slow to invest in such services. Providers have often cited financial concerns as a roadblock. Yet those providers that have turned their attention to palliative care frequently see positive returns. TRU Community Care, for example, saw its palliative care segment […]

Verma: Older Adults Must Have a ‘More Robust’ Set of Home Care Options

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Monday touted several tools designed to help states rebalance their long-term care ecosystem toward home- and community-based services.  The development is the latest in a series of CMS efforts aimed at strengthening home- and community-based services amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with the ultimate goal of […]

Late RAPs Could Trigger Immediate 20% Payment Reduction in 2021

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released its final home health payment rule for CY 2021 on Thursday, with essentially no changes to the Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) or its controversial behavioral adjustment.  In addition to doubling down on PDGM, boosting the home health base payment rate by 1.9% and making minor […]

HHS Loosens Provider Relief Fund Restrictions, Allows Agencies to Cover Lost Revenue

In response to ongoing opposition from both lawmakers and providers, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently announced it has made changes to its rules surrounding COVID-19 relief funding. The department’s amended rules now allow providers to use Provider Relief Fund (PRF) money toward lost revenue that’s potentially unrelated to COVID-19. “After reimbursing […]