Blogs - Tagged: home care

ZPICs Are Prominent – Article by Michael McGowan

Posted: 11.19.15 | Category: Corridor Solutions

There is a growing number of Florida Medicare home health agencies that are receiving notices from a Zone Program Integrity Contractor (ZPIC) stating that they are being investigated for a wide range of things, from waste, to abuse or even Medicare fraud.  They have been instructed that their patient records will be reviewed and their claims payments could be reversed, as well as fines will be assessed.  We are learning that this is becoming common-place across our nation.

In looking for a cause for this activity, it has been found that as high as 80% of agencies still have no understanding of Medicare’s Conditions of Payment.  For more information regarding this issue, click here.

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Study: Terminally Ill Patients Have A More Peaceful Death At Home

Posted: 10.13.15 | Category: Corridor Solutions

According to a new study published in the journal BMC Medicine, dying at home is a more peaceful experience than dying in a hospital. The study examined the cases of 177 cancer patients in London who died in a hospital and 175 who died at home. Researchers asked family members about the patient’s experience with grief in the week prior to their death; they found that patients who died at home experienced similar pain levels to those in hospitals but were more at peace in their last week of life.

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CMS Issues FY2016 Medicaid Hospice Payment Rates

Posted: 09.10.15 | Category: Corridor Solutions

In a recent Memorandum, CMS and CHIP Services Financial Management Group has issued a notice of the minimum Medicaid Hospice payment rates that will be effective for Fiscal Year (FY) 2016. Medicaid hospice payment rates are calculated using Medicare rates for the applicable time period, although there are minor differences in the payment rates. States have the flexibility to pay hospice programs higher rates than the minimum rates set by CMS.

Medicaid hospices will be paid a single rate ($162.10) for Routine Home Care (RHC) days from October 1 through December 31, 2015, after which RHC will be paid at one of two rates depending on where the day of care falls in the patient’s episode of care (days 1 – 60 and day 61 or later). Beginning January 1, 2016, Medicaid hospice programs will also provide payment for the Service Intensity Add-on (SIA). Medicaid hospice providers are subject to the Hospice Quality Reporting Program (HQRP) requirements, so failure to submit the applicable quality data will result in a 2 percentage point reduction in the hospice’s market basket update.

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NAHC Overtime Lawsuit Update: Parties Submit Competing Motions To Court of Appeals

Posted: 09.03.15 | Category: Corridor Solutions

NAHC’s lawsuit challenging the validity of the Department of Labor (DOL) rules regarding minimum wage and overtime compensation for personal care and live-in aides is headed to the Supreme Court. NAHC and the other plaintiffs have filed for a Motion of Stay with the U.S. Court of Appeals that reversed the lower court ruling that had vacated the challenged rules. The U.S. Department of Justice, representing the DOL, has also filed a Motion for Expedited Issuance of Mandate. NAHC says the Court of Appeals decision is expected to take effect on October 13 with an order that the lower court issue a decision in favor of the DOL.

NAHC believes the Motion for Stay is a key step in the appeal to the Supreme Court. If it is not granted, the rules will go into effect around October 13 even if there is an appeal pending before the Supreme Court. If the Court of Appeals denies the stay request, NAHC intends to seek a stay through the Supreme Court.

In its Motion, NAHC and the co-plaintiffs argue that a stay is necessary to protect the interests of consumers, workers, home care businesses, and state Medicaid programs. If the Court of Appeals ruling goes into effect, plaintiffs argue that consumers will face access to care problems, loss of continuity of care with the workforce shifting to part-time employees, and the risk that quality of care deteriorates when multiple caregivers replace a single one with a patient.

Click here to read more from NAHC.

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President Obama Praises Home Care During White House Conference On Aging

Posted: 07.15.15 | Category: Corridor Solutions

The White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA) was held on Monday, July 13, in Washington, D.C. The 2015 WHCOA focused on a variety of issue areas affecting older Americans, including home and community-based care, technology, caregiver support, elder abuse, financial security, and retirement.

President Obama said that “ensuring we have enough home care workers” is part of the solution to the challenges of caring for a growing aging population and seeing that “every American has the resources and support to thrive.” Additionally, President Obama used the example of his grandmother, describing her as a “fiercely independent woman” who chose to live at home after the passing of his grandfather.

Today, President Obama said, our nation faces the challenges of “dealing with the rising costs of an aging generation, ensuring we have enough home care workers looking out for our family members, maximizing the contributions that older Americans can make to our country.”

President Obama said his administration has focused and will continue to focus on improving home and community-based care. The White House also released a series of actions addressing issues affecting aging Americans and announced a series of private sector actions.

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