Volume 7, Number 44 November  14, 2018

Dear Healthcare at Home Colleague,

We have something for everyone this week. First, we here at the Rowan Report wish every one of you a happy Thanksgiving. Gratitude is one of the most powerful forces in the universe. Celebrate family. Celebrate our nation's ideals. And remember that "moderation in all things" includes turkey, football, alcohol, and dinnertime political discussions.

We have a guest author this week who asks an interesting question. John Corrigan wants to know what the best relationship is between medical and non-medical services? Are they mutually exclusive? Can they co-exist with the same patient during the same time period? During my own mother's final year, she gained great comfort from a non-medical caregiver while she was within a Medicare episode and later in-home hospice. Is this a common practice? Or are Medicare providers, as Corrigan asks, "afraid" of private duty? 

If that question is not within your wheelhouse, we also have two studies for CIOs and IT professionals. Do you already know everything you need to know about Wi-Fi 6? How about dual-SIM smartphones? You should. We help you get started. Click on the headlines below.

For Medicare providers, check out our reprint of the latest self pat-on-the-back from CMS. They have charts that show how well they have responded to a 2010 law, "The Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act." Their statement begs the unaddressed question, "When a Medicare contractor declares a payment 'improper,' are they always correct?" Be sure to click on this week's CMS News column below.

That is the news summary for this week. Let me leave you with two important reminders:

  • this news service comes to you thanks to the generosity of our sponsors. Please thank them by clicking on their graphic messages. You may learn they have exactly what you have been looking for.

  • this report has been electronic since 2005, after switching from paper and PDF versions. During those nearly 14 years, we have never deleted a single news story. We have, however, built a search engine into our home page at homecaretechreport.com. Whenever you need to do research, give it a try. We will reach the 3,000 article milestone sometime next year so there has to something there that will assist your quest to learn everything about home care's recent history.
  • Don't forget to check out your invitation to join the 8th annual Compliance Cruise, January 13-20, organized by the home care law firm of Bernard & Pearson.

Have a great week. Keep expressing your gratitude and making a difference!



Editor signature
Tim Rowan

Does Home Health Fear Private Duty? Or Just Misunderstand It?
Guest author John Corrigan asks, "When a patient could benefit from non-medical aide or homemaker services during or after a PPS episode, do you provide them yourself, refer the patient out, or ignore it?"

CMS News: Fewer Improper Payments in 2018
What CMS identifies as improper payments includes both real fraud and inaccurate findings of fraud by contractor error. As it slaps itself on the back for its success, CMS does not specify what percentage of payments might move from "Improper" to "Proper" if healthcare providers still enjoyed access to the ALJ appeals system.

Wi-Fi 6 is Coming; What IT Departments Should Be Doing Now
From DOS to Windows, from laptops to tablets, healthcare has always adapted to keep pace with advancing technology. Will it be ready for the next step forward: Wi-Fi 6?

Should Home Care Invest in Dual-SIM Phones?
The growing availability of phones that can accommodate two SIM cards is pushing price points down to home care budget territory.

When you click on these ads,
you make sure HCTR continues to come to you for free.

During the 3rd Quarter of 2018, web sites of the above advertisers were visited by home care and hospice executives and staff 1726 times.

To inquire about placing your message here, contact:


Last Week's Most-Read Stories:
What to Expect from the Emergence of ResMed
Whoever owns the most Healthcare at Home software products wins. Is ResMed throwing down the gauntlet to the other two rapid-fire acquirers, Netsmart and WellSky? We talked with ResMed's Raj Sodhi, president of SaaS Business.
What is Honor Up To?
"Everyone laughed at us but we were the last ones to get the joke." After failing to get away with deploying a fleet of "uberized" 1099 contract home care workers, Honor is resurrecting with a new investor and a new approach, partnerships. Should you "joinhonor.com"? We spoke with CEO Nita Sommers as well as a couple of doubters.

As of this date, approximately 31,625,000 Baby Boomers have become Medicare eligible.

Notable Upcoming Conferences Free Webinars

The 8th Annual Medicare Compliance Cruise *

Presented by Pearson & Bernard, PSC

January 12-19, 2019
Departs from Ft. Lauderdale

Information and registration

*The Rowan Report will see you there.

Your state or national association meeting not listed? Send the details to Conferences@RowanResources.com using this format:

Conference Title
Sponsoring Association
Hotel or Conference Center, City, State

Home Health Regulatory Update: Final Rule CY2019/CY2020 Payment & Policy Changes

Hosted by Healthcarefirst

Tuesday, December 11
Time: 2:00 pm EST
Audience: Home Health Agencies

Register Here

Please join HEALTHCAREfirst for a discussion of the final rule and how it may impact your agency. Topics include:
  • Payment rates, rural changes/FIPS
  • Elimination of the recertification estimate
  • HHVBP/HHQRP updates
  • Patient Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) including OASIS-D2 and no RAP payment for newly certified agencies
  • Patient monitoring and home infusion therapy updates


The 2019 Home Health Final Rule: Preparing for change
Your PDGM Questions Answered

Presented by WellSky

Featuring: Executive Management Consultant Sharon S. Harder and Home Health Clinical Expert Jill Dyer, BSN, RN, HCS-D, HCS-O
Date: Download on demand

Download now

Get answers to questions about the 2019 final rule and PDGM:

  • How to calculate case-mix
  • How to qualify for a rural rate
  • What does the term "budget neutral" mean
  • How will your agency be reimbursed for therapy under PDGM
  • How will LUPAs be calculated under PDGM

Hospitalization Performance Improvement Projects (PIPs)

Presented by HealthcareFirst
Hosted by ElevatingHOME & HHQI

Date: December 12
Time: 1:00 pm EST

Information and registration

In this webinar, ElevatingHOME and HHQI will explore how to develop hospitalization avoidance Performance Improvement Project (PIP) for your Quality Assurance & Performance Improvement (QAPI) program. This will include data collection, goals, interventions, rapid-cycle testing, spread, and sustainment. They will review several key strategies to reduce avoidable hospitalizations and emergent visits.

Webinar hosts, send your announcements to: Conferences@RowanResources.com

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Home Care Technology Report is published by Rowan Consulting Associations, Inc., Colorado Springs, CO. All rights reserved. Request reprint permission by writing to editor@homecaretechreport.com.

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