Bloomberg: US Home Care System Woefully Inadequate

A report in Bloomberg Businessweek paints a dire picture of the state of home care for the aging U.S. population. The article, published Feb. 9 and prepared in conjunction with the Investigative Fund at the Nation Institute, highlights a caregiver named Valia, describing her arduous 48-hour shifts to make a point about the lack of […]

Medicaid Home Care Demand Grows, States Grapple with Spending

More long-term care spending is going toward home- and community-based services (HCBS), according to a recent survey of all 50 states and the District of Columbia by Kaiser Family Foundation. Through the three main Medicaid HCBS programs in 2014—mandatory state plan home health services, personal care services, and Section 1915 (c) waivers—nearly 3.2 million people […]

HHS Nominee Open to Medicaid Block Grants

Alex Azar, President Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), again expressed some support for the idea of converting Medicaid to a block-grant program in a confirmation hearing Tuesday — though he cautioned that any solution is still far in the future and stated he was open to committing more […]

Why Louisiana Has a Home Care Problem

Louisiana nursing homes are taking up the lion’s share of the state’s Medicaid dollars, leaving some home-based care providers high and dry. But that’s not for lack of demand for home care services, according to a recent story on Business Report. The state currently has a backlog of around 31,000 Medicaid applicants for home-based care. “Across the […]

[Updated] The Trickle-Down Effect of Tax Reform on Home Health

The home health industry is one step closer to witnessing sweeping tax reform, with the bill on its way to President Trump’s desk. As such, the industry could see a windfall—though some cuts to Medicare and Medicaid could be triggered down the line. House and Senate lawmakers voted in favor of the Tax Cuts and […]

Removal of Flu Vaccine Measure to Boost Home Health Star Ratings

Home health agencies participating in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Quality of Patient Care (QoPC) Star Rating program could see a slight uptick in their average ratings on Home Health Compare, thanks to CMS’ proposed removal of the influenza immunization measure. Currently, home health agencies must be able to report on five […]

New Medicaid Program Prioritizes In-Home Care

A new Medicaid program in Pennsylvania could make it easier for the state’s seniors to get care in their homes instead of a nursing facility. Under the Community HealthChoices initiative, insurers will be paid to manage Medicaid’s long-term care services with a financial incentive meant to prioritize in-home care for enrollees. The state is rolling out the […]

OIG Notes Uptick in Home Care Medicaid Fraud Enforcement

The federal government is ramping up its efforts to nab perpetrators of Medicaid personal care services (PCS) fraud. A similar trend has been noted in Medicare home health care. Fraud indictments of PCS providers or attendants rose 56% between 2012 and 2015, while convictions increased 33% during that time, according to a new Office of Inspector General (OIG) report. […]

Home Health Stands to Reap Benefits from Tax Reform

The financial ripple effect of the U.S. Senate’s approval early Saturday of the GOP’s $1.5 trillion tax bill is expected to be felt by various industries, including home health. The proposed tax bill can greatly benefit many companies’ bottom lines; however, a provision within the bill is leaving health care providers on edge as to how […]

CMS to Improve Medicaid Program

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is taking steps to improve the Medicaid program with new proposals for reforms, fewer regulatory burdens, increased efficiency, and more transparency and accountability, CMS Administrator Seema Verma announced Tuesday. “Our vision for the future of Medicaid is to reset the federal-state relationship and restore the partnership, while […]