Monthly Archives: April 2012

Building Hospice Specialty Programs: Positioning Your Organization For Growth

Date: Tuesday, May 15, 2011

Time: 10 am PT/12 pm CT/1 pm ET

Presented by: Niamh Van Meines, MS, ANP, OCN, LMT

As hospices evaluate their patient populations they may find that they provide care for a particular diagnosis that could benefit from a specialty program. Dementias, Cardiac/Heart Failure, Pediatrics and Pain are just a few areas that could be addressed by such a program. Bridge programs can assist your organization in meeting community needs as well. This webinar will help you in determining if a specialty program is right for your hospice.

After attending this webinar, the participant will be able to:

  • Describe goals of specialty programs within their organization.
  • Identify programmatic needs that are unique to their organization and populations served.
  • Determine the framework for creating specialty programs.

Three Purchase Options Available:

Webinar Registration

Webinar CD

Webinar Combination Package

Learn More

Corporate Compliance Tip #2: Set the Standard

TCG wants to help your organization set the standard for corporate compliance success! Our Corporate Compliance Tip #2: Set the Standard focuses on the OIG’s Fundamental Elements three, four and five incorporated in our Corporate Compliance Programs Essentials guides. The guides educate home care organizations using the OIG Seven Fundamental Elements as outlined in the Federal Register.

When implementing a Corporate Compliance Program it is important to provide effective training and education. When it comes to education, all personnel need information about the compliance aspects of their specific duties and responsibilities. This includes everyone in the organization, from executives to staff to all other stakeholders. Training should be required at orientation and on an annual basis thereafter. Compliance trained instructors are integral in order to consistently train everyone involved. When developing training sessions, remember to incorporate the following but not be limited to:

• General prohibitions on paying or receiving remuneration to induce referrals
• The physician self-referral law
• Improper alterations to clinical and billing records
• Providing home health/hospice services with proper authorization
• Proper documentation of services rendered, including the correct application of official ICD and CPT coding rules and guidelines
• Patient rights and patient education
• Compliance with Medicare conditions of participation
• Duty to report suspicions of non-compliance
• Marketing guidelines

Another important element of a Corporate Compliance Program is to develop effective lines of communication. Communication allows the organization to gather the force to propel itself to the center of the compliance target. In order to continue success throughout the organization it is important to develop effective lines of communication. Be sure to allow time for questions and discussions while keeping a respectful and meaningful exchange. This can be accomplished by using several different means of communication, for example:
• Emails
• Toll-free hotline
• Newsletters
• Website
• Faxes
• Survey
• Bulletin Boards

Lastly, always make sure to enforce standards through well-publicized disciplinary guidelines. Remember when implementing your program, problems arise and it is important to adhere to established policies and be prepared to react to any issues that may occur. Disciplinary guidelines must be in place to counteract any setbacks because being inconsistent is harmful for an organization. If an incident occurs here is a good standard to follow for typical steps taken:
1. Letter of Reprimand
2. Probation
3. Monetary Penalties
4. Pre-dismissal

For detailed information, graphs and samples, our Corporate Compliance Program Essentials guide is available at

Center for Care at the End of Life

Last month TCG was recognized for our elevator sponsorship for the Center for Care at the End of Life. The dedication event was attended by Kathy Dodd, TCG Founder and CEO, and Jeannee Parker Martin, President and Co-Owner.

Take a look pictures and more from the event here. We are honored to sponsor the elevator for the Center for Care at the End of Life!

National Hospice Work Group (NHWG)

This week marks the National Hospice Work Group (NHWG) quarterly meeting. NHWG is a group of esteemed Hospice CEOs who lead agencies that have achieved recognition as models of practice and are viewed as valued contributors to the discussion around end of life care throughout the nation. The mission of NHWG is “To stimulate new ideas, share best practices and emerging models, stay informed of key issues and to build a strong network among leaders who aspire to excellence.” Our President, Jeannee Parker Martin is attending as a proud member of the NHWG.

For more information on NHWG check out their website at

Corporate Compliance: First things, first…start with the basics.

Corporate Compliance may start at the top, but it requires cooperation from the entire organization, including board, senior leadership, personnel, stakeholders and vendors. Beginning with the Board of Directors and senior leadership, compliance trickles down through internal controls, billing, and even to patients. Your board and senior leaders have a duty to provide oversight for codes of conduct, policies and procedures, infrastructure, violations and quality. Once the foundation for compliance is in place, the organization has the ability to decide on the best structure to support workflow, risk controls, and communications necessary to manage compliance activities.

Implementing an effective Corporate Compliance Program is key for staying current with home health and hospice regulations and everyone in your organization must be educated and informed. When focusing on a solid Corporate Compliance Program, organizations must know the mission, goals and objectives of the organization. Once determined, it is important to start with implementing appropriate written policies, procedures and standards of conduct. They are at the center of your program. For an effective Corporate Compliance Program, there are certain policies that must be in place. An example of some policies to include:

• Company mission, values and vision statement
• Privacy and security policy – HIPAA
• Code of conduct and ethical behavior
• Conflict of interest
• Compliant marketing and sales practices

Once you have the basics in place, it is essential for the Board of Directors to create a Corporate Compliance Committee (CCC) and to appoint a Corporate Compliance Officer (CCO). An effective CCO should be a senior-level executive with access to the highest levels of the organization and should possess excellent management and communication skills. Because the role demands several duties, the position may be full time. Starting with the basics may seem simple, yet, for many organizations, this is a key area to “re-tool.”

Corporate Compliance and Ethics week is coming up! This is a great opportunity to learn about activities and programs to begin the path to continuing professional education thanks to the Health Care Compliance Association, HCCA. Corporate Compliance and Ethics week will be in full swing May 6-12! For more information about this special week visit HCCA online.

TCG experts are here to assist. For more detailed information, our Corporate Compliance Program Essentials Guides for Home Health and Hospice are available at, or feel free to contact us at (866) 263-3795. Depend on TCG to be your trusted business partner for compliance!

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