Hospice News Digest 7-9-2018

News

Proposed 2019 Budget Cuts CMS and ONC

Proposed CMS Transfer Policy from Hospitals to Hospice Has Problems

NAHC Bulletin 6-29-2018

The Conservative Case for Universal Healthcare

Events

CMS Open Door Forum on Key Home Health and Hospice Issues

Upcoming Webinar: Hospice Provider and Medicare Part D Walk Through

Need help using your free online education (UAHC or UHPCO) membership benefit?

Interest Items

NHPCO Podcast: Valuable Resources-STAR and Your People

Medicare spent $2 billion for one drug as the manufacturer paid doctors millions

Hospice Action Network July 2018 Monthly News Update

The Carolinas Center’s News of Note

CGS July 2018 Medicare Bulletin

News

Proposed 2019 Budget Cuts CMS and ONC

Via NAHC Report: “The House Appropriations Committee has released a draft 2019 budget for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that proposes boosting the department by about $1 billion to $89.2 billion, but contains significant cuts for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC).

The CMS would be cut $168 million to $3.5 billion, which is $42 million below the agency’s request to Congress. Like the 2018 bill, this funding includes nothing to implement the Affordable Care Act and forbids collection of user fees from Health Insurance Exchanges and risk corridor payments.” Download the full article here…

Proposed CMS Transfer Policy from Hospitals to Hospice Has Problems

Via NAHC Report: “The National Association of Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) has written a letter to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma, objecting to the proposed mechanism of the CMS plan to impose its post-acute transfer policy to hospice, beginning October 1, 2018.

As a quick reminder, under the post-acute transfer policy, certain hospital diagnosis-related group (DRG) payments are reduced to a per diem rate when the length of stay (LoS) is at least one day less than the mean LoS for an applicable DRG and the hospital stay is followed by a discharge to post-acute care. ‘Transfers’ to home health under pre-existing law are those cases where home health services begin within three days following the date of hospital discharge.” Download the full article here…

NAHC Bulletin 6-29-2018

Read Calvin McDaniel’s NAHC Bulletin for 6-29-2018 here…

The Conservative Case for Universal Healthcare

Ed Dieringer, UAHC government outreach chair, shared this article from The American Conservative by Chase Madar. Here’s a sample: “Don’t tell anyone, but American conservatives will soon be embracing single-payer healthcare, or some other form of socialized healthcare.

Yes, that’s a bold claim given that a GOP-controlled Congress and President are poised to un-socialize a great deal of healthcare, and may even pull it off. But within five years, plenty of Republicans will be loudly supporting or quietly assenting to universal Medicare.

And that’s a good thing, because socializing healthcare is the only demonstrably effective way tocontrol costs and cover everyone. It results in a healthier country and it saves a ton of money.

That may seem offensively counterintuitive. It’s generally assumed that universal healthcare will by definition cost more.” Interested? Download the full article here…

Events

Upcoming Webinar: Hospice Provider and Medicare Part D Walk Through

Via NAHC Report: “In recent years the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and other policymakers have been closely tracking spending under Medicare Parts A, B and D while a patient is on a hospice election out of concern that these programs may be inappropriately covering items and services connected to the hospice terminal condition and any related conditions.  Spending outside of hospice under Parts A and B has diminished over the past five years, but spending under Part D increased during 2016 and 2017.

In an effort to improve understanding of the interaction of hospice coverage for drugs and Medicare Part D, the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs’ Hospice Task Group (of which the National Association for Home Care & Hospice and other hospice and part D stakeholders are members) is developing FREE education on this important topic.  The first such educational offering is scheduled as follows:

WHAT:           Webinar – Hospice Provider and Medicare Part D Walk Through

WHEN:            July 24, 2018, at NOON Eastern

FACULTY:     Mary Perez, Medicare Part D Senior Systems Analyst, Enrollment”

Interested? Read more here…

CMS Open Door Forum on Key Home Health and Hospice Issues

Via NAHC Report: “The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will hold a home health and hospice Open Door Forum on Wednesday, July 11, 2018, from 2:00 to 3:00 PM Eastern Time to discuss the latest developments in the industry. Please call at least 15 minutes prior to the forum start time.

The agenda for the Open Door Forum, which is open to change, will begin with opening remarks from Chair Hilary Loeffler of the Center for Medicare and Moderator Jill Darling. From there, the Open Door Forum will move on to announcements and updates:

  • MLN article SE 18007 – Recent and Upcoming Improvements in Hospice Billing and Claims Processing;
  • CY 2019 Home Health Prospective Payment System Proposed Rule;
  • Home Health CAHPS Survey (HHCAHPS) Announcements; and
  • Hospice CAHPS Survey Announcements.”

Read the full article for further information here…

Need help using your free online education (UAHC or UHPCO) membership benefit?

Did you know that online training for your staff is a free benefit that comes with your (UAHC or UHPCO) membership?

Do you need help using this valuable resource?

RCTCLearn’s upcoming webinar will teach agency training coordinators new to this free online learning benefit or new to the My CEU tool for tracking course completions to use these tools effectively.  The webinar provides an excellent opportunity to learn about the new features on the system as well as discuss ideas on how to introduce or re-introduce the programs.

The webinar is designed for new users. But it may also benefit existing agencies and training coordinators.  Plan on about 15 minutes or a little longer depending on user questions.

The webinar is offered both Wednesday, July 11th and Wednesday, July 25th at 10:00 a.m. to allow more people to participate.

Register at http://www.rctclearn.net/webinar.   Before the event, registered participants will receive connection information via email.

Interest Items

NHPCO Podcast: Valuable Resources-STAR and Your People

Via NHPCO: “The Survey of Team Attitudes and Relationships is the only employee satisfaction tool created for hospice professionals – a benefit of NHPCO membership. Kristi Dudash explains to Jon R. how STAR works and what it offers.  Board Member, Darren Bertram also discusses the value of employee engagement and education and recognizing that your people are your most valuable asset.Access the podcast here…

Medicare spent $2 billion for one drug as the manufacturer paid doctors millions

Via CNN: “More than 80% of doctors who filed Medicare claims in 2016 for H.P. Acthar Gel — a drug best known for treating a rare infant seizure disorder — received money or other perks from the drugmakers, according to a CNN analysis of publicly identified prescribers.

The analysis, which looked at doctors who filed more than 10 Part D claims, found that the drugmakers — Mallinckrodt and Questcor — paid 288 prescribers more than $6.5 million for consulting, promotional speaking and other Acthar-related services between 2013 and 2016. Mallinckrodt purchased Questcor in 2014.

At about the same time, Medicare spending on Acthar rose dramatically — more than tenfold over six years.” Read the full article by Wayne Drash, Sergio Hernandez, and Aaron Kessler here…

Hospice Action Network July 2018 Monthly News Update

Read the current news update from the Hospice Action Network here…

The Carolinas Center’s News of Note

Access interest articles curated by The Carolinas Center from 6-27-2018 here…

CGS July 2018 Medicare Bulletin

Read CGS’s Medicare Bulletin for July 2018 here…

 

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