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After OIG Reports, House Committee Seeks More Information on Hospice Deficiencies

Posted on Friday, August 2, 2019 1:38 PM

As a result of two recent reports issued by the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General (OIG) targeting hospice survey deficiencies and quality of care, the House Ways and Means Committee Chair is asking CMS for further information. 

The Chair is asking for the following information:

“Expansion of Deficiency Data Reported by Accrediting Organizations

  • Types of metrics CMS will collect, the rationale for collection of those elements, and the timeline for such collection
  • How CMS will ensure such reporting occurs timely and reliably

Reporting of Potential Abuse of Neglect

  • CMS’ plans to rectify patterns of care deficiency (including abuse and neglect) and underreporting to law enforcement
  • CMS’ plans to strengthen reporting of abuse, neglect, or other harm
  • CMS’ plans to monitor and enforce reporting to ensure appropriate tracking of abuses
  • CMS’ materials for use in educating hospices of recognizing signs of abuse, neglect or other harm and plans for oversight of information dissemination
  • CMS’ plans for encouraging and educating patients and hospice staff to recognize and report suspected abuse
  • CMS’ plans to improve communication between CMS and law enforcement

Improvements to Complaint Process

  • Explanation of CMS’ reasoning and resource constraints that compelled only partial agreement to improvements in the process
  • Whether CMS plans to standardize complaint forms

Hospice Quality Measures

  • CMS’ plans for already topped out process measures
  • CMS’ short and long-term plans to improve quality measurement in hospice to include more outcome measures, the measures CMS is considering, which measures CMS would eliminate, the standards CMS uses for consideration and the timeline for changes to the hospice quality measures

Increase Oversight of Hospices with Histories of Serious Deficiencies

  • CMS’ plan to increase oversight of such hospices and the timeline for action
  • Whether and how Quality Improvement Organizations (QIO) will play a role in improving hospice care
  • Whether CMS is considering a Special Focus Facility Program for hospice
  • How CMS plans to define a “history of serious deficiencies” and the rationale for the definition, as well as what additional hospices this definition might capture when applied
  • Provide the three most recent years’ data on hospices with serious deficiencies and the reasons for those deficiencies”


Source: NAHC Report



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