The Number of Medicare-Certified Home Health Agencies Is Dwindling

The number of Medicare-certified home health agencies in the United States is dwindling — and it’s a trend that started long before the Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) kicked in. From 2018 to 2019, the number of home health agencies dropped by about 3.6%, a decrease of 427 individual providers, according the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission […]

Post-Acute Care Policy Expert: PDGM May Support COVID-19 Treatment

The COVID-19 pandemic is overloading hospitals, prompting uncertainty about adequate space and supplies to deal with each patient. In order to diversify resources, the home-based care industry will need to play a crucial role. Soon, home-based care agencies will have to care for their traditional patients and an influx of new ones. That includes those […]

The Top Home Health Trends of 2020

In all likelihood, 2019 will go down as one of the most important years in Medicare-certified home health care history. While many industry-shaping changes didn’t officially begin last year, 2019 did set the stage for several new regulatory and business trends in 2020. Almost all of those trends are somehow linked to the Patient-Driven Groupings […]

MedPAC Pushes for 7% Medicare Payment Cut for Home Health Agencies

Despite reimbursement pressure tied to the Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM), the overall home health care outlook remains relatively rosy for 2020, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) believes. But that rosy outlook may signal a payment cut come 2021. MedPAC officials discussed the U.S. post-acute care sector’s outlook earlier this month during one of its […]

CMS Announces New Hospital, Home Health Discharge Planning Requirements

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a final rule Thursday that makes changes to discharge planning requirements for home health providers. Broadly, the changes are part of CMS’s efforts to make patients a more active part of their care transitions out of the hospital and into other settings. “This delivers on President […]

MedPAC: Home Health Continues to Shift Away from Post-Hospital Care

Home health providers continue to see a rise in patients coming from the community instead of hospitals and other institutional settings, recently released Medicare data shows. From 2001 to 2017, the number of home health episodes not preceded by a hospitalization or other post-acute care (PAC) stay increased by nearly 124%, according to updated figures […]

MedPAC Questions Home Health Providers’ Reporting on Patient Functional Ability

For years, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) has floated the idea of a unified payment system for all post-acute care providers — skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), in-patient rehabilitation facilities (IRFs), long-term care hospitals (LTCHs) and home health agencies. MedPAC and its team of 17 commissioners provided additional insight into what a potential unified model […]

Encompass Health’s April Anthony: PDGM Is an ‘Overcorrection’ to Therapy

As currently structured, the Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) will completely change how and when home health providers deliver therapy services. It will do so in multiple ways, most notably by eliminating the use of therapy service thresholds as a factor in payment determinations. It’s a move the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) has long recommended. […]