Volume 8, Number 31 February  13, 2019




Dear Healthcare at Home Colleague,

Happy Valentine's Day! I want to start with a clarification. As our understanding of next year's Medicare payment rules evolves, we gather input from a wide variety of consultants and attorneys. Their understanding is evolving as well. Last issue, we reported that every home health payment episode would be billed under the rules in place on the day of discharge, meaning episodes starting as early as December 2 would fall under PDGM rules. We apparently misinterpreted that paragraph in the rule.

At a recent CMS webinar, officials made it clear that the episode's starting date, not end date, will determine whether it should be billed under 2019 or 2020 rules. For example, an admission on December 31, 2019 will be a 60-day episode, billed under the HHRG reimbursement system.

Something for everyone

Providers of both Home Health and Home Care services will want to be sure to catch guest author James Cohen's deep dive into Artificial Intelligence in home care. Starting with the research that early technology adopters most often experience better business outcomes, he recommends all of  healthcare pay attention to AI. It has the potential to supplement human decision-making for the benefit of patients.

For Medicare Home Health

We continue to unpack what we learned from the experts at last month's Home Care 100 gathering. We'll start with their advice regarding next year's PDGM reimbursement system for Medicare providers and, in our next issue, explore what they said about post-acute care providers of all types building partnerships with health systems, physician groups, and investors. Find PDGM recommendations from the CEOs of VNSNY, AccentCare, and Kindred in "Experts Offer PDGM Advice at Home Care 100."

These were two of the strongest messages at that January Scottsdale conference, sponsored by Lincoln Health. Start now to prepare for PDGM in January and build partnerships with other healthcare providers. This second piece of advice leads back to technology, specifically interoperability. It is not a buzzword but a necessity. You will not build partnerships with large health systems if your EMR cannot exchange data with them. Look at both our Vendor Watch column and CMS News column for developments in interoperability.

IMHO

I thought about letting this slide but decided it might be important. We get reports that show how many times each news article we post is opened by readers. Looking back, I see that we have posted ten articles – some news, some analysis – about the coming PDGM payment system since last July. Checking our reports, I also see that these articles have been read by only a handful of people.

Frankly, I am worried about you.

Of course, I know we are not your only source of information. Nevertheless, you have opened other news items between five and ten times as often as our PDGM articles. This makes me suspect you think it is too early to think about PDGM. It is not.

This new payment system will bring big changes; Medicare home health agencies will not be able to start preparations after their summer vacations and be ready by 1/1/20. Predictions are that many of you will struggle to survive even if you do prepare and that hundreds, if not thousands, of agencies will go under. Your EMR vendor will help, and we are interviewing them to let you know what their plans are, but you cannot rely exclusively on your software to rescue you. Notice that NAHC, with BKD, Simione, and HPS, began a 12-city PDGM seminar tour already in January, delivering a clear message that you need to start now. PDGM will require improvements in clinical documentation, operational timeliness, and enhanced coding skills. Training, not software, is your path to those goals.

If you would like to catch up, we would like to help. On this publication's web site, homecaretechreport.com, we provide an article search tool. Enter PDGM in the search field and it will pull up all ten of the PDGM articles I mentioned. Happy reading!

Have a great week. Keep making a difference!

Editor signature
Tim Rowan



Experts Offer PDGM Advice at Home Care 100
At last month's Home Care 100 conference, CEOs from our largest home health organizations delivered stark, severe warnings to their peers about the folly of waiting too long to start PDGM preparations.

Early Adopters Thrive with Artificial Intelligence in Home Care
Artificial Intelligence is the buzzword at this year's HIMSS meeting...and every other healthcare IT meeting in the country. What does it mean for post-acute care? Guest author James Cohen has some ideas that may change the way you think about AI.

CMS News
Promoting Interoperability Programs: IPPS Final Rule Fact Sheet and Hospitals Submit Attestation Data by February 28

Vendor Watch
— QliqSOFT has announced the release of a new, patient-facing chronic care management solution that allows for the easy sharing and monitoring of data between patients and their care team members.
— Kno2 feted at HIMSS for interoperability innovation.
— Wellsky selected for Commonweal membership

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



























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

To inquire about placing your message here, contact:

Kristin@rowanresources.com

Last Week's Most-Read Stories:
PDGM - How Well You Utilize Your EMR is About to be Tested!
It is imperative as an agency that your EMR vendor's PDGM plans be reviewed alongside your present system utilization and internal processes. Have you asked your EMR vendor about their plans?
 
Does Your Behavior Really Need Modification?
CMS believes a 6.42% pay rate reduction will inspire all nurses to develop more accurate OASIS assessments.

As of this date, approximately 32,626,000 Baby Boomers have become Medicare eligible.



Notable Upcoming Conferences Free Webinars

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.


 

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


NAHC 2019 Conference & Expo *

October 13-15
Seattle

Information and Registration


Two Sales Training Boot Camps: Home Health and Hospice & Palliative Care

Presented by Healthcare Strategica, LLC

Featuring: Michael Ferris
Location: Westin Lake Las Vegas Resort

Bootcamp 1: PDGM Home Health Sales
Date: November 12-13

Bootcamp 2: Hospice & Palliative Care Sales
Date: Novenber 14-15


Register with code "HCTR" for $100 off.


PDGM Success Seminars hosted by Axxess *
Sponsored by: BKD, Aegis Therapies, HealthCare ConsultLink, Home Health Care News, Gateway Home Health Coding and Consulting, Worldview, Connected Home Living, Laengrich Healthcare Partners and Swift Medical

Dates and Locations (open to all Home Care providers):
  • Dallas, TX Tuesday, September 24
  • Houston, TX Thursday, September 26
  • Boston, MA Tuesday, November 5
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL Thursday, November 14
  • Chicago, IL Tuesday, October 22
  • Columbus, OH Thursday, November 12
  • Las Vegas, NV Friday, October 4
  • McAllen, TX Tuesday, December 3
  • San Antonio, TX Thursday, December 5
Information and Registration (early bird discount code: Axxess2020)
The one-day seminars will focus on the following learning objectives:
  • The PDGM impact numbers that matter most, along with operational strategies to ensure proper reimbursement                   
  • Specific actions to take for each PDGM risk factor, including coding, non-groupable diagnoses, LUPA avoidance and management, chronic care management, and therapy management
  • How to drive growth for your organization through institutional referral strategies and the use of specialty programs, including wound care and complex nursing
Including specifics such as:
  • How to get the most important OASIS information you need in five minutes
  • Implementing maintenance therapy programs and telemonitoring
  • Setting up visit schedules that prevent avoidable LUPAs 
  • How each component of PDGM builds the case weight 
  • Restructuring intake processes to obtain necessary billing 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!



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


A QUALITY JOB: Clinical Management & Care Coordination Under PDGM

Hosted by VNAA
Sponsored by MatrixCare/Brightree
Presented by Simione Healthcare Consultants

Featuring: Laura Wilson, RN, BSN, Sr. Manager, Simione Healthcare Consultants
Date: Wednesday, September 11
Time: 12:00 pm EDT

Free Registration

PDGM is so much more than a billing change! Home health agencies preparing for payment reform need to look closely at clinical operations to make accommodations that will uphold quality, including care alternatives that add value to the equation. In this webinar, we’ll share insights based on the findings of gap analyses to help your organization make a successful transition under the new requirements. Recommended Attendees: Clinical Managers, Intake Staff, Coders / QA, Finance & Billing personnel Hosted by VNAA, sponsored by MatrixCare/Brightree, presented by Simione Healthcare Consultants



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

Did you receive this issue as a forward from a colleague? Would you like to have your own free subscription? Click here.

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.

HCTR is free to subscribers and supported by its generous advertisers. To inquire about presenting your message to our 5,000 subscribers, write to Kristin in our ad sales department, Kristin@RowanResources.com.