CMS Finalizes $230 Million Hospice Payment Rate Increase for 2015

Hospices serving Medicare beneficiaries will see an estimated 1.4%, or $230 million, increase in their reimbursements for fiscal year 2015, according to a final rule issued by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). The payment increase would be the net result of a hospice payment update to the hospice per diem rates of […]

New LG Tech Update Targets Direct Care Workers

Changing health care legislation has pushed the adoption of electronic health records (EHRs) in the industry, but new technologies are emerging to keep up with the industry’s evolving needs.  LG CNS, a subsidiary of LG focused on information technology services, has rolled out a new version of its Point of Care Solution (POCS) in order […]

NAHC to CMS: Hospices Need More Time to Comply With Cost Reporting Changes

The National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC) has sent a letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), pushing the agency to give hospice organizations more time to comply with upcoming cost report changes. Industry organizations await CMS’ final version of the revised Hospice Cost & Data Report, which proposes significant […]

CMS Cuts Back on Hospice Drug Restrictions

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has scaled back its restrictions requiring all hospice drugs to be approved before they can be dispensed.  Now, prior authorization will only be necessary for four categories of prescription drugs: analgesics, anti-nauseants, laxatives and anti-anxiety medications, according to a recent CMS memorandum. “We recognize that the operational […]

Sinfonia Healthcare Corp Launches Home Health Services in Virginia

Arizona-based home health company Sinfonia Healthcare Corporation (NASDAQ:PRSC) is launching operations beyond the Grand Canyon state into Virginia. Sinfonía announced its newest home health operation, Sinfonía Family Services of Virginia, Inc,. on Wednesday. The Farmville, Va.-based operator will offer services statewide, including home-based and school-based counseling, substance abuse treatment, medical services for the mentally ill, […]

Home Health Leaders See Future Cuts Driving More Consolidation

The ever-present and impending funding cuts to the home health industry have yet to signal that the sky is falling, but while some providers may be feeling the strain financially, others are more optimistic of the future to come—with short term consolidation in the meantime.  Regulatory cuts to home health Medicare payment rates, such as […]

Kindred Ups Bid to Buy Genitiva — Again

Following an ongoing series of acquisition rejections, Kindred Healthcare (NYSE:KND) has again increased its offer to buy Gentiva Health Services (NASDAQ:GTIV). Gentiva recently rejected Kindred’s offer to acquire all outstanding shares of the company’s common stock for $14.50 per share, saying the offer undervalued the company and was not in the best interests of its shareholders. […]

Miami Patient Recruiters Plead Guilty in $20 Million Home Health Fraud

Four patient recruiters have pleaded guilty for their participation in a home health fraud scheme that bilked the federal government out of an estimated $20 million in Medicare dollars.  The four recruiters, Estrella Perez, Solchys Perez, Abigail Aguila and Monica Macias pleaded guilty last week to various charges including conspiracy to defraud the United States, for […]

Minnesota Home Care Workers Petition for Union Vote Despite SCOTUS Ruling

Home care workers in Minnesota are gearing up for what organizers say would be the largest union election vote in state history. Workers and organizers with the Service Employees International Union delivered state officials 9,000 union cards signed by workers calling for the election, reports. These cards represent nearly 35% of potential voters, as […]

CMS Proposal Would Cut $7 Billion in DMEPOS Payments

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has proposed a rule that would cut Medicare reimbursements for durable medical equipment (DME), prosthetics, orthotics and supplies (DMEPOS) by more than $7 billion from 2016 to 2020.  The proposed rule would create significant changes to Medicare coverage and payment policies for DMEPOS, including a methodology for adjusting […]