Home-based Care Industry Reacts As Illinois Raises Minimum Wage

Illinois has joined a number of states set to raise their minimum wage dramatically in the years to come. Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D-Ill.) on Tuesday signed a law raising minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. The move has drawn praise from caregiver advocates and criticism from industry leaders — who worry home health […]

CMS Lifts Moratoria on Home Health After 5 Years

The long-standing moratoria on new Medicare home health agencies is no longer in effect anywhere in the U.S. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) allowed the temporary ban to expire on Jan. 30, a move that will likely improve patient access to home-based care in related markets, experts say. CMS initially implemented a […]

CMS Fails to Start Home Health Review Choice Demo as Scheduled

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) did not meet its publicly announced Monday goal of launching the Review Choice Demonstration (RCD) in Illinois. RCD is a revamped version of CMS’ widely opposed Pre-Claim Review Demonstration (PCRD) from 2016, an initiative that required home health providers to send in their Medicare claims earlier in […]

Vermont Home Health Agencies Face Big Financial Hit Under Proposed Medicare Changes

Seven of Vermont’s 10 home health and hospice agencies will lose significant funding as a result of recent changes to Medicare’s rural add-on payments. In 2018, rural home health agencies across the country received a 3% rural add-on payment increase. The payment bumps, which providers have been receiving for several years, help in dealing with obstacles […]

Proposed Medicare Changes Threaten Home Health in Rural Markets

Throughout the past several years, home health providers operating in rural areas have received on-and-off payment bumps to help them overcome the inherent obstacles of operating in remote and sparsely populated areas. While relatively small, those payment bumps, officially known as rural add-on payments, have played an important, cost-effective role in allowing America’s non-city-dwelling-seniors age […]

Home Care Industry Strives to Stay Off ‘Regulatory Menu’

Throughout the past few years, home-based care — especially the private-duty industry — has gained greater recognition as a key part of the overall health care continuum. With that increased prominence, though, has come greater scrutiny. As part of an increase in attention, home health and hospice providers alike have made strategic moves to add […]

Voices from Pre-Claim: Lessons Learned the Hard Way (Part 2)

Click here to read Part 1 of this series. Home health providers in Illinois now sound a little different when discussing Pre-Claim Review (PCR), compared to the early days of the demonstration project. Back in August, after PCR first rolled out, agencies in the Land of Lincoln were angry and frightened—angry at what they perceived […]

Voices of Pre-Claim: Lessons Learned the Hard Way (Part 1)

Home health providers in Illinois now sound a little different when discussing Pre-Claim Review (PCR), compared to the early days of the demonstration project. Back in August, after PCR first rolled out, agencies in the Land of Lincoln were angry and frightened—angry at what they perceived as the rushed and sloppy implementation of a burdensome […]

NAHC Official: Hope Dims for Pre-Claim Delay, CoP Relief More Likely

Home health agencies have cause to be optimistic about a delayed implementation of the new Medicare Conditions of Participation (CoP) rule, but with prospects appearing less bright for changes to the Pre-Claim Review Demonstration (PCRD), it’s imperative to continue beating the drum, according to one of the industry’s most prominent voices in Washington, D.C. It’s impossible to say […]

[Updated] Agencies Slam ‘Misleading’ Data on Illinois Pre-Claim

While providers in Illinois have been reporting numerous problems and sky-high non-affirmation rates for claims submitted under the Pre-Claim Review Demonstration, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released data that appears to characterize the program as proceeding smoothly. In fact, the data seem so optimistic, it’s hard for many to believe it […]