Top Payment Scrutiny Areas in Hospice Care

As more government agencies leverage data analysis and tracking to monitor billing in the home health and hospice space, providers are seeing heightened scrutiny across billing practices. From time to time, everyday mistakes in documentation and challenges with compliance can lead to bigger problems—even when providers think they are doing everything right. In 2015, hospice […]

Critical End-of-Life Choice Leads Fewer Kidney Patients to Pick Hospice

Patients with end-stage renal disease are faced with a seemingly impossible dilemma as their health deteriorates: try to prolong life with continued treatment or seek end-of-life comfort through hospice. Hospice care—covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurers—is a benefit available to individuals with a life expectancy of six months of less. The way it’s […]

Opioids, Star Ratings Among Top Regulatory Issues in Hospice

The hospice care space has become the hot acquisition target of the moment, in part because buyers see high margins and fewer regulatory hurdles when compared against home health care. However, that does not mean hospice is entirely spared from new and evolving hurdles and regulatory obligations. From opioid-related legislation to forthcoming Hospice Compare changes and […]

How the Hospice Benefit Could Be Redefined

As recent changes across the health care system over the last few years indicate that person-centered, interdisciplinary care can improve clinical outcomes, boost patient satisfaction and potentially lower overall costs, hospice care could see an evolution ahead. Hospice has become known as the first truly interdisciplinary benefit, bringing together many types of care under one […]

Hospice Carve-In for Medicare Advantage is ‘Inevitable’

While much of the health care system is moving more Medicare beneficiaries into managed care, hospice continues to live on its own island. That’s because hospice is not allowed as a benefit in Medicare Advantage plans. “What the MA structure creates is a bifurcation,” Julia Driessen, assistant professor of health policy and management at the […]

Hospices Aim to Improve Transition Times

One of the most essential Medicare benefits for end-of-life care has a gap or two. Hospice, the end-of-life care provided by Medicare, is not often used for very long, even when patients could benefit from the care a lot sooner. Almost half of hospice patients were only admitted in the last two weeks of life—a […]

Hospice Services Increasing Fastest in Nursing Home Setting

Hospice services in nursing homes are increasing at a faster pace than in any other care setting, according to the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization’s (NHPCO) latest report. As the average life expectancy in the U.S. rises, so too does the number of individuals who die of chronic diseases and require long-term care. Last […]

Study: Americans In Hospice Often Receive Less Than 1 Week of Care

Of ongoing concern to hospice and palliative care professionals is the fact that 34.5% of patients died or were discharged within seven days of admission, according to the latest National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) data.  “While many dying Americans are opting for hospice care at the end of their lives, far too many […]