Volume 6, Number 45 November  8, 2017



Dear Healthcare at Home Colleague,

I apologize but I believe I may have buried the lead last week. The joint effort by several national associations to talk some sense into Congress and CMS about the dangers of their 2018 Home Health PPS reimbursement changes, popularly known as HHGM, for Home Health Groupings Model, was our most important message. Without thinking it through, however, we placed the urgent plea and instructions for you to add your comments at the end of the article.

Here are two things journalists know. Few people read all the way to the end of an article. And far more of you read my opening "Dear Colleague" letter each week than who read each issue's news articles. So, here is what you may have missed:

All parties conclude their individual and joint statements by urging all stakeholders to help deliver the message. "To defeat this payment rule before it brings havoc to the industry, we need home health leaders, employees and patients to make their voices heard by policymakers in Washington, D.C. Without your support and advocacy, this rule cannot be stopped," the official NAHC statement reads. To make it easy to help, NAHC has added to its Legislative Action Center a page where members can ask Congress to tell CMS to withdraw the payment rule. Your career may depend on whether you follow that link and offer your representative your views right now.

In this week's news: We start with a book review. Industry veteran Tina Marrelli, known for her best-sellers Handbook of Home Health Standards & Documentation: Guidelines for Reimbursement and Home Care Nursing: Surviving in an Ever-Changing Care Environment, has written a comprehensive manual for caregivers themselves. It will be useful to family caregivers as well as to your employees. Be sure to check out our review of A Guide for Caregiving: What's Next? Planning for Safety, Quality, and Compassionate Care for Your Love One and Yourself.

With the impending Medicare reimbursement changes, we decided to focus our other two stories in that direction. First, we reprint for you CMS's 2018 Final Rule Fact Sheet. (Remember that all of our articles are easily printed. Just look for the "print" icon after you open the article.) We also believe you will enjoy the highly controversial joint statement by the Medicare Rights Center and the Center for Medicare Advocacy about the negative effects for Medicare beneficiaries if Congress passes the version of the tax reform bill recently introduced into the House of Representatives.

If you read this in time, consider tuning in to Tuesday's episode of the DeVero/Netsmart Expert Webinar Series, featuring OperaCare founder Michael McGowan. Entitled 5-Star Ratings: Not Good Enough for the Long Haul, the 90-minute webinar will be presented at 11:00 am PST, 2:00 EST. Reserve your seat for this free webinar by clicking here.

You will also benefit from the 7-part Workforce Webinar series presented by ElevatingHOME. The titles and descriptions of all seven segments are too long to summarize here. Get the details and registration information for segment two, "From Turnover to Engagement for the Healthcare Executive: What Returns Value," on the ElevatingHOME web site. You can also download segment one from last week, "Why Staff Leave and How to Keep Them!"

Have a great week. Keep making a difference!

 

Editor signature
Tim Rowan



Book Review: New Marrellli Guide Tackles Your #1 Problem
An informal poll of medical and non-medical home care agency owners and administrators revealed that personnel issues -- from staffing to training to compliance violations -- dominate their daytime thoughts and nighttime anxieties. Just in time, Tina Marrelli's A Guide for Caregiving arrives. Read our book review to see why we recommend you do not buy it for yourself. Buy a copy for every one of your in-home caregivers.

CMS Releases 2018 Final Rule Fact Sheet
Last week, CMS issued a final rule (CMS-1672-F) that updates the calendar year 2018 Medicare payment rates and the wage index for home health agencies serving Medicare beneficiaries. We reprint the entire fact sheet here for you.

Medicare Advocacy Groups Concerned About Tax Reform Proposal
Opinions are beginning to appear about the recently released House version of the tax cut bill the President needs to fulfill a campaign promise. This one comes in a joint from the Medicare Rights Center and the Center for Medicare Advocacy.

 
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During the 2nd Quarter of 2019, web sites of the above advertisers were visited by home care and hospice executives and staff 2157 times.

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Last Week's Most-Read Stories:
CY18 Home Health Prospective Payment System Called Disastrous
The final rule for the 2018 Home Health payment system is likely to be revealed this week. Every national home health association and many large providers have joined forces to urge Congress to order CMS administrator Seema Verma not to implement the system as it appeared in the proposed rule. This level of cooperation among competing organizations only occurs when the situation is dire.
 
NAHC Opens Its New Era With A Pledge for Openness
At this year's Annual Meeting, the path toward "NAHC 2.0" was laid out by its Interim President. We spoke to him about what comes next.

As of this date, approximately 27,544,000 Baby Boomers have become Medicare eligible.



Notable Upcoming Conferences Free Webinars

2018 Annual Conference

AHHC of North Carolina

May 7-9
Sheraton Imperial Hotel & Convention Center

Register


West Coast Payer and Provider Summit to Address Social Determinants of Health for Complex PopulationsA World Health Care Congress Executive Series Event

June 4-5

Doubletree Resort Paradise Valley
Scottsdale, AZ


Download agenda

Leading in a Changing World

Texas Association for Home Care & Hospice 49th Annual Meeting
August 8-9
Moody Gardens Hotel & Spa
Embassy Suites Frisco Hotel & Convention Center
Frisco

Information and registration


Home Care Cruise

Sponsored by: HealthCare Synergy
Featuring: Melinda Gaboury, Michael Tidd, Paula Pettit
Dates: August 24-27
Location: Carnival Inspiration, Los Angeles to Ensenada, Mexico

Information and Registration

(Early Bird Pricing Ends May 15)


ICD-10 Coding: Beginner & Intermediate Workshops, Plus HCS-D Certification Exam

Presented by Home Care Association of Florida

Join HCAF and Home Health Solutions' J'non Griffin for full day ICD-10 workshops for beginner and intermediate coders, plus an optional Home Care Coding Specialist - Diagnosis certification exam!

Workshop 1: Beginner Coding
Date: March 4
Time: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm EST
Location: Four Points Miami Airport West

Beginner: Information and Registration

Overview: In this interactive class, you will learn the basics of assigning ICD-10-CM coding for home health and hospice. You will understand how it relates to billing, audits, OASIS, and compliance, and why it is so important to have accurate coding on your agency claims. You will learn the guidelines and conventions, and ethical and legal considerations. We will also teach you how to properly look up codes in your manual. Bring a current 2019 ICD-10 CM manual with you to class.

 

Workshop 2: Intermediate Coding
Date: March 5-6
Time: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm EST
Location: Four Points Miami Airport West

Intermediate: Information and Registration

Overview: This class is for the coder who understands the basics and is ready to take their coding knowledge to the next level. In this 2-day session, we will work through common home health and hospice scenarios for each chapter and discuss the rationale behind each. Understand how coding can affect accurate reimbursement, outcomes, and how important coding will be under PDGM. Understand the interaction between face-to-face documentation, clinical notes from the provider, accurate coding, and an accurate comprehensive assessment. Learn why it is important to get it right the first time. We will also discuss the latest coding clinic guidance related to coding. Bring a current 2019 ICD-10 CM manual with you to class.

 

Workshop 3: HCS-D Certification Exam
Date: March 7
Time: 8:00 am - 12:00 pm EST
Location: Four Points Miami Airport West

Download the Exam Registration Form

Overview: The Association of Home Care Coding & Compliance's (AHHC) credentialing arm, the Board of Medical Specialty Coding & Compliance (BMSC), offers professional credentials, including the only nationally accredited home health coding credential that tests coding skills exclusively, the "Home Care Coding Specialist - Diagnosis (HCS-D)." BMSC has been credentialing home health coders since 2003. More than 68% of agencies require coders to have earned the HCS-D credential as a condition of employment.


National Healthcare CNO/CMO/Informatics Summit

Presented by Marcus Evans Events

Date: March 18-19, 2019
Location: The Langham Huntington, Pasadena, Los Angeles, CA

The Healthcare Summits are the premium forums bringing senior level medical executives and solution providers together. The one-on-one business meetings provide access to senior medical executives within the largest healthcare organizations across the United States. A thorough selection process ensures a qualified audience, which grants unparalleled business and networking opportunities in a luxurious and stimulating environment.
Information and registration

 


2019 Omaha System International Conference: A Key to Practice, Documentation, and Information Management

Date: April 3-5, 2019
Location: Eagan, Minnesota
Fees: Pre-Conference (1 day): $165
Conference (2 days): $335
Pre-conference and Conference (all 3 days): $500

Registration and Information
The Omaha System International Conference is held every two years as a venue for those in practice, education, research, and software development to exchange experiences. There is something for everyone involved with the Omaha System, from beginners to experts to everyone in between. Joyce Sensmeier, HIMSS is the keynote speaker, and The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing is the school host. The 2019 PDF flier includes location and registration information, speaker/planner list, agenda, exhibitors, and more.

National Healthcare CXO Summit

Presented by Marcus Evans Events


Date: May 19-21
Location: Eau Palm Beach Resort

Keynote Presenters: Susan Blumenthal, past US Assistant Surgeon General; Nicholas Webb, Healthcare Futurist

Registration Information

The National Healthcare CXO Summit is the premium forum bringing senior level healthcare executives and solution providers together. As an invitation-only event, taking place behind closed doors, the Summit offers an intimate environment for a focused discussion of key new drivers shaping the healthcare industry.


NAHC Financial Managers Meeting *

July 14-16
Sheraton Grand Hotel
Chicago

Information and Registration


Senior Care 360: Strategy and Solutions Conference *

Presented by: Lincoln Healthcare Leadership

Date: July 31 - August 2
Location: Gaylord National Resort, National Harbor, MD

Information and Registration


 

3rd Interoperability Forum

Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) 

Date: August 21-22
Location: Renaissance Hotel, Washington, DC

Register Online

This event will bring people together from ONC, the healthcare industry, and the technology sector to:
  • Learn about recent efforts to advance interoperability nationwide
  • Identify concrete actions in response to current interoperability barriers
Attendees will hear keynotes from industry influencers, have the opportunity to view demos showcasing innovative solutions and participate in tracks focused on various aspects of interoperability. Co-led by industry leaders and supported by ONC experts, the tracks will provide an opportunity to discuss the latest issues and identify actions that can be taken to address key barriers to interoperability in a group setting.
Who: Health IT standards and technology community, including developers, policymakers, technology staff at provider organizations, and consumers.

SAGE/2019 *

Hosted by Honor

Date: September 10
Location
: Portofino Hotel & Marina, Redondo Beach, CA
Time: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Information and Registration
(Rowan Report subscribers have been offered a 25% discount; use discount code "Rowan" when you register)

How we care for our aging population is one of the most daunting and important challenges we face as family members, as community builders, as leaders in our industry.
That’s why Honor is launching SAGE/2019, a day of inspiring keynotes, lively panel discussions, and intimate conversations on the most compelling topics in senior care and wellness. We’re bringing together thinkers and doers, innovators and entrepreneurs, academics and leaders in healthcare and home care.
You’ll meet creative thinkers who are shifting the narrative about aging, company founders who are driving change, and visionaries who are imagining what’s possible in the future. This is a unique opportunity to network with thought leaders, peers, and potential partners, to revolutionize how we think about aging, and, most importantly, to take action.

Home Health, Home Care, Hospice GROWTH SUMMIT *

Date: Sept. 17-19
Location: Green Valley Ranch, Las Vegas

Information and Registration

Join renowned agency mentors Cheryl Peltekis and Melanie Stover for an owners' and executives' ONLY event focusing on how to survive and thrive in this rapidly changing environment. Cheryl and Melanie will break down exactly how to maximize your agency’s growth during this time of disruption in an easy to follow system you can use, over and over.

HCAOA 2019 Annual Leadership Conference *

Home Care Association of America

Date: September 22-23
Location: Marriott Tucson Starr Pass Resort

Information


*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
Date(s)
Hotel or Conference Center, City, State
URL

Navigating the Hospice Cost Report

Sponsored by: ElevatingHOME

Date: February 19, 2019
Time: 12:00pm EST
Fee: FREE

Register Now

CMS has stated that 66% of the cost reports previously filed should not have been accepted and will now be subject to more strenuous requirements. The cost reports will be used by CMS to recalibrate and adjust the hospice daily payment rates.

Join Elevating Home for this webinar as Tom Boyd, Vice President of Reimbursable Services with Simione Healthcare Consultants discusses what is new and help participants identify and understand the requirements for the completion of the Medicare Hospice cost report.



 

The Hospice Cost Report: A Requirement & A Management Tool

Presented by: Tom Boyd, MBA, CFE, CHFP, Vice President of Reimbursable Services, Simione Healthcare Consultants

Date: February 14
Time: 2:00 - 3:00 EST
Fee: FREE

Register now

Join Simione Healthcare Consultants for an overview of hospice cost reporting and ways to make sense of all the required information to support timely, accurate and affordable filing. A Simione cost report is backed by our longstanding experience with reimbursement and government reporting. Discover the difference and get the bigger picture on your hospice finances!



How to Satisfy the OIG's Requirements for Fraud and Abuse Compliance Training
Featuring: Elizabeth E. Hogue, Esq.
Date: Wednesday, August 7
Time: 1:00 - 2:30 pm EDT
Available on demand after broadcast date.
Option to purchase CD & handouts
Information and Registration
 
The OIG requires that home care providers of all types must provide effective training on fraud and abuse compliance for employees early in their employment and on at least an annual basis thereafter. Let us help you satisfy these requirements by participating in this teleconference! Whether you are a home health agency, hospice, HME company or private duty agency, gather your staff members together for this teleconference to satisfy the OIG's requirements. 
Participants will learn about three major types of fraud and abuse: false claims, kickbacks, and violations of the Stark law. Practical examples in the home care industry will be emphasized with concrete guidance about what to do about possible violations. The teleconference will also focus on how employees should raise concerns about possible fraudulent conduct internally before they even consider going outside the company. 
 


Interoperability for Service Providers through CMS’s EMDI Initiative

Presented by: ElevatingHOME and VNAA

Featuring: Pallavi Talekar, Project Manager, Scope Infotech, Inc.; Ray Wilkerson, Sr. Business Analyst, Scope Infotech, Inc.; Nandini Ganguly, Business Analyst, Scope Infotech, Inc.; Kishan Patel Business Analyst, Scope Infotech, Inc.; Briana Barnes, Project Coordinator, Scope Infotech, Inc.

Date: Tuesday, July 30
Time:
12:00 pm EDT
Fee:
Free to ElevatingHome, VNAA, and Alliance for Home Health Quality Improvement members

Registration

Representatives from the EMDI Initiative team will discuss interoperability using health IT standards, including Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR). Participants will learn about pilot opportunities with CMS to enhance provider workflow using three critical use cases. Participants will:
  • Gain knowledge of interoperability concepts and use of latest standards, including FHIR;
  • Gather information on three critical use cases in the post-acute care setting to reduce provider burden and enhance their interoperability footprint; and
  • Identify next steps for participation in an upcoming pilot opportunity with CMS.


Learning Series Webinar: Million Hearts®2022 & Related Medicare-Covered Preventive Services 
CMS National Training Program

Date: February 14, 2019
Time: 1:00 - 2:30 EST
Fee: FREE

Register now

This webinar provides an overview of:

  • National Initiative—Million Hearts® 2022
  • Heart Disease and Stroke in the U.S.
  • Medicare-Covered Preventive Services Related to Heart Health

 



Security Risk Assessment Tool Overview and User Feedback Session

Presented by: CMS

Date: Wednesday July 17

Time: 1:00 pm EDT

Fee: Free

ONC and the HHS Office for Civil Rights are holding a training session and overview of the Security Risk Assessment (SRA) Tool. The tool is designed to assist small to medium providers in conducting an internal security risk assessment. This assessment will aid providers with their security risk analysis as required by the HIPAA Security Rule and the CMS EHR Incentive program. Following the webinar, participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback.
 
Register


PDGM’s Behavioral Adjustments - What You Need to Know Now

Sponsored by eSolutions

Featuring: Karri Wright, Sr. Director, Product Management at Homecare Homebase

Date: Thursday, August 29
Time: 2:00 pm CDT
Fee: Free

REGISTER NOW

The webinar covers:

  • CMS assumptions and intended adjustments and their impact on:
    • Upcoding
    • Comorbidities
    • LUPA Avoidance
  • Considerations for HHAs
  • Evaluating your HHA data now to assess tomorrow based on today’s reality


OASIS-D: Ensuring Consistency & Accuracy

Presented by Curaport
Featuring:
Melissa Abbott, RN, MSN, MHA, of 5 Star Consultants

Date: Thursday, October 18
Time: 2:00 p.m. EDT

Fee: $99 (per attendee)

Information & Registration

* This education session is approved for one (1) contact hour of Continuing Education for Nursing.

OASIS! Possibly the most spoken word, or acronym, in the Home Health industry. And just when you get to grips with the current version, the next set of changes arrive before you know it, this time in the form of OASIS-D. In this webinar, you will gain an understanding of the significant changes D brings to OASIS and how to ensure consistencies and accuracy within your agency.

 

*Curaport, LLC is an approved provider of Continuing Education by the California Board of Registered Nursing. All states accept this certification for their licensing requirements. No refund shall be given, except for any change in date or time of the webinar. In such case, a full refund shall be given to the registrant upon request.



Building a Successful, Data-Driven Quality Program

Presented by Brightree

Featuring: Rhonda Dornbos, RN, BSN, Chief Clinical Information Officer, DB HealthTech Consulting
Date: Wednesday, September 26
Time: 1:00 pm CDT

Free Registration

The home care and hospice industry is increasingly competitive. The shift from “volume” to “value” means that agencies must increasingly focus on quality outcomes and prove their “worth” to customers and referral sources alike.  Agencies must have a robust quality program in place that identifies, tracks, and trends key metrics against agency goals.  Successful agencies not only have visibility into their current performance, but they continually modify and develop new strategies for improvement, while engaging their clinicians.



Using a Sales & Marketing Dashboard to Get Ahead of Your Competition

Presented by Curaport

Featuring: Melanie Stover, OT, MBA, Homecare Sales

Date: Wednesday, September 5
Time: 2:00 p.m. EDT
Fee: $59 (per attendee)

Information and registration

Webinar Overview
Driving patient admissions and revenue is the top priority for your sales team. Creating a system that quickly monitors production is key to keeping your agency on track for sustainable growth.

This webinar will provide your agency with 3 ways to use your dashboard to get ahead (and stay ahead!) of your competition.



Introduction to the CMS Electronic Medical Documentation Interoperability (EMDI) Program

Presented by: ElevatingHome
Featuring:

  • Pallavi Talekar, Project Manager, Scope Infotech, Inc.
  • Ray Wilkerson, Sr. Business Analyst, Scope Infotech, Inc.
  • Nandini Ganguly, Business Analyst, Scope Infotech, Inc.
  • Briana Barnes, Project Coordinator, Scope Infotech, Inc.
Date: Wednesday, August 8
Time: 1:00 p.m. EDT

Registration

 

Participants will gain understanding of the CMS-driven Electronic Medical Documentation Interoperability program, focused on reducing provider burden by engaging health care providers and stakeholders in pilots that establish secure communication to share medical documentation by aligning with nationally recognized interoperable standards. This event is designed for providers and vendors who are willing to enhance their workflows and communication to achieve efficiency by reducing time and cost.

In this session participants will learn about interoperability and shift in the health care IT landscape, EMDI pilot program details, EMDI pilot program benefits, and how to partner with the EMDI to achieve interoperability.



The Penalty Box Compliance Series Part 8: The IMPACT Act

Presented by Curaport
Featuring Kristi Bajer, RN, MSN

Wednesday, May 23
1:00 p.m. EDT
$39

Information and registration

This education session is approved for one (1) contact hour of Continuing Education.



Hospice compliance 2019: confronting a surprising new survey focus
Sponsored by: Wellsky
Featuring: Robert Markette, esq.
Date: March 14
Time: Noon CDT
Fee: None
Hospice providers today are confronting a new and unexpected survey focus. Hospice surveyors are increasingly focused on issues relating to hospice administration. This administrative focus includes topics such as your hospice’s corporate structure, the relationship between your hospice’s parent office and its multiple locations, and the role and job title of your administrator. Hospice providers who have been successfully operating for years are suddenly finding themselves hit with condition level citations. How will your hospice team adapt to the major survey focus of 2019? Join renowned hospice attorney Robert W. Markette of Hall, Render, Killian, Heath & Lyman, P.C. for an exclusive webinar that will prepare you and your team for the major survey focus of 2019.

Information and registration

Attend and learn:
Why a poorly drafted organizational chart can be a significant problem for your hospice
What hospice surveyors are looking for in the relationship between your hospice’s parent office and its multiple locations
Why calling your administrator something other than “administrator” could be a survey issue


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

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