Volume 6, Number 45 February  1, 2017



Dear Healthcare at Home Colleague,

We have to start with bad news. Sorry. Last week I talked with you about the regulatory compliance conference at which I was invited to speak, organized by a couple of attorneys. We learned about Medicare rules and labor laws that certified and private duty home healthcare providers violate at their own peril. As if the urgency of their message was not already apparent, fate stepped in to underscore it...with a bright red pen. On Friday, January 13, as speakers and attendees were traveling to that conference, a surprise FBI raid shut down all 19 offices of Bethany HomeHealth Services, which served more than 20,000 patients a year in 160 Texas counties.

You will not find the reason for the sudden closure with a Google news search or in other home health newsletters. Local TV stations and Texas newspapers only reported that phones were not being answered, employees were not being paid and the Texas department of labor had not been given the required advance notice. Even the FBI web site is silent about its Friday the 13th raid. Our story comes from an extremely reliable source, a consultant Bethany engaged to help clean up their compliance issues. Apparently, they waited too long to bring him in.

According to our source, Bethany owners were not consciously in business for the purpose of defrauding Medicare. They were not career criminals. They were just guilty of sloppy practices and failure to see the world changing around them. The Feds no longer put up with the practice of four, five or six (or more, sometimes a lot more) consecutive PPS episodes the way they used to, especially when OASIS assessments do not support medical necessity. Take this as a warning: Bethany was not doing anything different than many of you who are reading this. This will not be the last home health FBI raid. You need to be looking over your shoulder not only at MAC claim denials and ZPIC audits. You've got to keep an eye on the guys with guns and badges too. Compliance! (If you do not know where to turn, I suggest clicking on the ad for OperaCare in the middle of this page.)

Note to other Texas agenciesIf you find yourself absorbing former Bethany patients and employees, please notify your MAC immediately. As attorneys Lucian Bernard and Liz Pearson warned one of your colleagues when we all heard this news, a sudden, unexplained census spike automatically generates an ADR. The only protection you have is if your intermediary knows the reason for your spike in advance.

With that uplifting intro, let's look at this week's other news 
This year's Homecare 100 gathering was the best ever. With all eyes on Washington, especially following the confirmation of Dr. Tom Price as HHS Secretary, we feature a summary of statements made by a former Pennsylvania representative, both from the Homecare 100 stage and in our follow-up conversation with him. His insider insights into how things work on Capitol Hill may allay some of your worries.

Guest author Elizabeth Hogue, esq. rejoins us with an important update on the infamous Jimmo case. The court found that CMS did not comply (there's that word again) with its previous order to educate providers about the difference between intermittent and maintenance therapy. The federal agency was ordered to write the difference in a clear, one-paragraph statement, a task that proved too difficult. So, the court wrote the statement for them and then ordered CMS to enter into a Corrective Action Plan. You must read the entire article. It is sad and laughable at the same time.

Keeping you up with vendor news, we have stories about a couple of new partnerships: BlackTree Consulting with Relias Learning, and HEALTHCAREfirst with MEDsys, as well as news of an expanded library of webinars from Curaspan. Lastly, a big welcome to our newest sponsor, KanTime. Be sure to click on their ad at the right to welcome them to the family.

Have a great week. Keep making a difference!

 

Editor signature
Tim Rowan



CMS Ordered to Create Its Own Corrective Action Plan
Bureaucrats at CMS are getting a chance to find out what it is like to be forced to follow a Plan of Correction. Ordered by the court to improve its messaging, agency failed to write a required paragraph, so the judge wrote it for them.

Former Congressman Explains "Repeal and Replace"
Former Congressman educates Homecare 100 audience about planning for the uncertainty of healthcare reform under a new HHS Secretary.

HEALTHCAREfirst Partners with MEDsys for EVV
Partnership with one of the two surviving HHSC-approved EVV vendors in Texas is designed to ensure that home health agencies meet EVV compliance protocols.

Curaport Launches New Educational Services
New online healthcare information and education curator offers convenient online learning tools.

Vendor Watch
— BlackTree Consulting partners with Relias Learning
— Catch him if you can. Abagnale to speak at HIMSS

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



























During the 1st Quarter of 2018, web sites of the above advertisers were visited by home care and hospice executives and staff 2597 times.

To inquire about placing your message here, contact:

Kristin@rowanresources.com

Last Week's Most-Read Stories:
Loophole May Provide Hope for Beleaguered Palliative Care Providers
The MACRA law is being implemented by CMS in a way that creates a dilemma for palliative care providers based inside hospices. We spoke with the Center to Advance Palliative Care and learned there may be hope.
 
Failing Pre-Claim Review Experiment Should Not Expand to Another State
Guest author Julianne Haydel brings a 20-year veteran home health consultant's perspective to the crisis PGBA has created in Illinois with the way it is implementing the CMS Pre-Claim Review experiment in Illinois.

As of this date, approximately 24,464,000 Baby Boomers have become Medicare eligible.



Notable Upcoming Conferences Free Webinars

Homecare 100 *February 4-7
Ritz-Carlton
Amelia Island, FL
Registration is full. To be added to the waiting list, contact Miriam Adams at madams@lincolnhc.com

National Leadership Conference *
Sponsored by:
Visiting Nurse Associations of America

Alliance for Home Health Quality and Innovation

April 19-21

Hilton San Diego Bayfront
https://www.homebasedcareevents.com/

Omaha System International ConferenceA Key to Practice, Documentation and Information Management
April 20-22, 2017
Eagan, MN
Bi-annual conference offers opportunities to gain knowledge about using electronic health records across diverse settings, exchanging health information, and enabling data sharing among practice, education, and research. For additional information about the conference, the call for poster abstracts and award nominations, and to register, visit www.omahasystem.org/conferences.html.
Email abstracts to lchoromanski@gillettechildrens.com

ATA Annual Meeting

American Telemedicine Association
April 23-25
Orange County Convention Center
Orlando

http://www.ata2017.org


Pediatric Home Care Conference

Texas Association for Home Care & Hospice
May 9
Omni Austin Hotel Southpark

Details and registration


New England Home Care & Hospice Conference & Trade ShowMay 16-18
Radisson Hotel
Manchester, NH
Brochure and Registration

Annual Conference *Home Care Association of Colorado
May 17-19
Keystone Resort & Conference Center
Keystone, CO
http://www.homecareofcolorado.org


Home Health Emergency Preparedness CoP Requirements:
Getting Your Agency Ready

Featuring Mary St. Pierre, RN, BSN, MGA
Free, sponsored by HEALTHCAREfirstSeptember 13

1:00 pm Central Time
Omni Austin Hotel Southpark

Details and registration

http://www.healthcarefirst.com/webinars/

  • Overview of the emergency preparedness requirement
  • What surveyors will be looking for
  • Steps home health agencies should take to prepare

Our Home Care Landscape: Big Challenges, Bigger Opportunities *
Annual Meeting of the Home Care Association of America
October 8-11
Austin, TX
Information and registration

AHHC 2017 Leadership ConferenceAssociation for Home & Hospice Care of North Carolina
October 9-10
Holiday Inn Resort
Wrightsville Beach

Click here to register

*HCTR will see you there.
MHHA Annual Conference

Michigan Home Care & Hospice Association
April 25-26
Amway Grand Plaza
Grand Rapids
Information and Registration


New England Home Care and Hospice 2018 Conference
Presented by Home Care Associations of:
Connecticut
Maine
Massachusetts
New Hampshire
Rhode Island
Vermont


April 25-27
Cliff House Maine Hotel
Cape Neddick

Information and Registration


2018 Annual Conference

AHHC of North Carolina

May 7-9
Sheraton Imperial Hotel & Convention Center

Register


2018 National Leadership Conference

Home Care Association of America

September 22-25
Marriott Wardman Park Hotel
Washington DC

Information for Providers and Exhibitors


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

2017 Regulatory Updates, Including Home Health Conditions of Participation

Free Webinar Hosted by DeVero Software and Relias Learning
Featured Speakers: Michael Tidd, Healthcare Synergy; Robert Love, DeVero
Tuesday, March 21
2:00 pm EDT / 11:00 am PDT

Register Here


Juggling the New CoPs and Other Applicable Laws

Sponsored by Kinnser Software
Featuring Robert W. Markette, Jr., Esq., CHC, of Hall, Render, Killian, Heath & Lyman, P.C.
Thursday, January 25
1:00 - 2:00 pm EDT

Attend to Learn:

  • Why "legal representative" is a concept you should already be familiar with
  • What compliance with the nondiscrimination provision of the Affordable Care Act may mean for the new CoPs
  • Why you must be more aware of harassment issues and prepared to take action
  • How harassment issues affect your discharge policies

Free: Register here



Improving CAHPS Response Rates: 2 Free Webinars

Sponsored by HEALTHCAREfirst
Featuring:
Liz Silva, Director of Home Health & Hospice, HEALTHCAREfirst

Hospice CAHPS: Wednesday, May 2
2:00 pm EDT
Free Registration

Home Health HHCAHPS: Thursday, May 10
2:00 pm EDT
Free Registration

With greater visibility into quality through public reporting on Hospice Compare and Home Health Compare, hospice and home health providers have an even greater incentive for performance improvement. During each 45-minute webinar, we will discuss methods and activities that have been instrumental in improving CAHPS survey response rates, a key element of implementing a data-driven approach and improving your scores. To be discussed:

  • Hospice CAHPS Regulations
  • Response Rate Calculation
  • Available Benchmarks
  • Effective Strategies to Improve Response Rates

 



Are You Marketing to the Wrong Person?
A Different Way to Get Home Health Referrals

Presented by Healthcare Synergy
Featuring: Melinda Rodriguez, PT, DPT, MSCS, LSVT
Date: Wednesday, March 7
Time: 10:00 a.m. PST; 1:00 p.m. EST

In this Webinar, you will:
  • Learn another way to market inpatient facilities other than discharge planners, case managers or social workers.
  • Discuss the role of Home Health in the challenging healthcare environment – Short Term Home health.
  • Describe the Continuum of Care Concept in the post acute care network
  • Identify strategies to reduce risk of acute care readmission.
  • Discuss options for discharge disposition for potential skilled nursing facility candidates to decrease SNF discharge rate for inpatient rehab units.

Register



2017 What You Need to Know about Electronic Visit Verification

EVV offers many benefits to agencies and care providers, and choosing the right solution can lead to improved operating efficiency, caregiver communication, quality of care, and client satisfaction.

Wednesday, March 15
11:00 am MST - 12:15 pm MST

Register Here



How to Attract and Retain Health System Relationships

Presented by Netsmart
Ongoing
Free
Watch now

 


Under Pressure — OASIS Service Utilization Review

Presented by Michael McGowan of OperaCare
Thursday, April 6
12:00 p.m. EDT
Cost: $49
Registration



What You Need To Know About Electronic Visit Verification
Presented by Darby Anderson, CDO, Addus HomeCare Corporation
Sponsored by CellTrak
Wednesday, April 12
1:00 p.m. EDT
Cost:  Complimentary
Registration link
 


Understanding the Effect Functional Scoring Has on Your Agency
Presented by Chad Whitefield, PTA, Managing Partner of Advance Rehabilitation Management Group
Thursday, April 13
2:00 p.m. EST
Cost:  $99
Registration link 


Increase Referrals, not Overhead- Streamlining the Intake Experience

A streamlined, efficient intake process creates a better patient experience and improves referral relationships. During this webinar, industry experts will share their quick tips and best practices for improving your intake process and managing your organization's revenue cycle.

Sponsored by Forcura
Featuring: Craig Mandeville, Founder & CEO of Forcura Jessica Stover, Senior Manager of Blacktree Healthcare Consulting
Tuesday, Oct 3
2:00 pm EDT

Registration


QAPI Overview

Presented by Diane Link, BlackTree Healthcare Consulting
Tuesday, May 23rd
2:00 p.m. EST
Cost:  $99
Registration


Good Ways to Break Bad News: Social Worker Edition

Presented by Curaport
Featuring:
Heather Calhoun, RN, BSN, COS-C, HSC-D

Date: Tuesday, May 1 
Time: 2:00 p.m. EDT

Fee: $79
Information & Registration

*This education session is pending approval from the National Association of Social Workers for one (1) contact hour of Continuing Education for Social Workers.

 

 

 



Clinical Impact of OASIS-D

Presented by HEALTHCAREfirst

Featuring:

Deanna Loftus, HEALTHCAREfirst Director of Regulatory Compliance
Mary St. Pierre, RN, BSN, MGA, Regulatory Consultant

Tuesday, May 1
2:00 pm EDT

Free Registration

In March 2018, CMS released the draft of the latest version of the OASIS data set, OASIS-D. Modifications are being made to OASIS in order to comply with the IMPACT Act, to reduce data collection burden, and to improve formatting throughout the document. CMS is seeking approval from the Office of Management and Budget for a January 1, 2019 implementation date. Topics:

  • Addition of six new standardized items
  • The removal of 28 OASIS questions that will no longer be assessed.
  • Modification to M1311 to support a new standardized pressure ulcer measure.
  • Addition of responses to M1028, M1311, M2102 and removal of responses to M2310.
  • Review of additional changes to OASIS

 



The Penalty Box Compliance Series
Part 7: Audit-Proof Your Visit Notes

Presented by Curaport

Featuring: Kristi Bajer, RN, MSN

Wednesday, April 18
1:00 p.m. EDT
$39

Information and registration

Description: An auditor shows up on your doorstep and fear sets into your agency.  You have worked hard to be compliant, but you still have several days of anxiety until the auditor pronounces you have passed and are deficiency free!   Everyone celebrates.  The next day you receive 20 audits from CMS. Don't let this happen to you and your agency!  Learn from the compliance experts at OperaCare how to ensure compliance with the new CoP's. This education session in part 7 of the Penalty Box Compliance Series.

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

 

 

 





What Does Behavioral Health Have to do With Home Health Outcomes?

Presented by: Netsmart/DeVero
Featuring: Katherine J. Vanderhorst ,RN-BC,BSN and Dr. Amy Craven

Thursday, February 22
2:00 p.m. Eastern
Learn why integrating behavioral health with chronic care management can improve star ratings.

Many home health patients have co-existing Chronic Behavioral Health problems that are not dealt with. If not addressed, problems like anxiety and depression leave patients unable to self-manage diabetes, congestive heart failure, CHF, COPD and other serious medical conditions. This presentation will show why recognizing and managing behavioral health diagnoses and can have a positive outcome on your agency’s STAR ratings. Presented by Katherine J. Vanderhorst ,RN-BC,BSN and Dr. Amy Craven.

Registration



The Penalty Box Compliance Series Part 6: Audit-Proof Your Visit Notes

Presented by Curaport
Featuring Kristi Bajer, RN, MSN

Wednesday, March 21
1:00 p.m. EDT
$39

Information and registration

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


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

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