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What Could Newly Appointed HHS Secretary Price Do for Home Health?

Posted on Monday, February 13, 2017 7:48 PM

As of this past Friday, we have a new Health and Human Services leader – Secretary Tom Price.

Given the Trump Administration’s focus on the Affordable Care Act, initially Secretary Price will be very busy with “repeal and replace” strategies. One area that home health providers should be keeping tabs on as ACA is addressed is the potential changes to Medicaid.

Specifically for home health providers, Price’s background and activities as a member of Congress (Representative for Georgia’s 6th) point to a few key areas to watch for early impacts:

A Pause (or End?) for Pre-Claim Review
When in Congress, Price co-sponsored the Pre-Claim Undermines Seniors’ Health (PUSH) Act, which would have delayed PCR implementation for one year. As a physician, Price has always been an advocate for providers and especially physicians, and he recognized PCR created an unusual burden.

Regulatory Rollback?
A key priority for the Trump administration is reducing the regulatory burden on business. Secretary Price will have a lot to choose from within his new organization, especially for home health. Targets for this reduction work at HHS could include eliminating face-to-face and the homebound status for certain patient conditions.

Open to Suggestions
As a member of Congress, Secretary Price was in regular discussions with representatives of several organizations who represent home health issues – the Partnership for Quality Home Health (PQHH), the Visiting Nurse Association of America (VNAA) and the National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC). Since beginning of the year, these organizations have expressed optimism about Secretary Price’s potential to positively impact home health.

Written by Des Varady, Corridor’s CEO.

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