Volume 8, Number 43 February  20, 2019



Dear Friends and Colleagues,

This special edition marks two anniversaries. I hope you might indulge me while I look back on my 20 years as editor of Home Care Technology Report. Even if you have been around as long as I have, there may be some history you did not know.

Anniversary #1: 20 years of home health, home care and hospice news

HCTR was originally a print publication called Home Care Automation Report. Founded in 1995 by United Communications Group, today known as Decision Health, HCAR was a companion to their primary publication, ...home health line. When UCG discontinued HCAR in December, 1998, one of their occasional authors, nationally-known home care technology expert Tom Williams, acquired it. Tom had come to national prominence in the early 90's as the VP of a Medicare Regional Home Health Intermediary in Milwaukee.

I met Tom in June of 1998 when we were both speaking at a UCG seminar. One month later, when my IT Director position at a Colorado agency fell victim to the IPS disaster, UCG invited me to try my hand as a reporter. By December, Tom had become familiar with my writing. As soon as he took over as publisher, he took a big risk and asked me to be his editor and primary writer. After some strategy meetings in Port Washington, Wisconsin in January, we released our first issue together. It was dated February, 1999.

Under Tom's ownership, HCAR evolved from a mailed, monthly print publication to a PDF in magazine format delivered by email to what it is today, a fully electronic weekly newsletter with full-length articles posted on a web site accompanied by headlines with summaries emailed to subscribers. When we went electronic in 2005, Tom also converted HCAR from subscriber-supported to today's free, advertiser-supported format.

For 10 years, I was essentially Tom Williams' apprentice. A renowned story-teller, he tutored me with tales of his first-hand experiences of the history of our industry, his battles against fraudulent providers as the head of an RHHI, and some eye-opening, insider secrets about its tech vendors and trade associations. We began to be frequent speakers at national and state association conferences; we organized tech vendors into a professional trade association; and, with help from software developer Tom Theimer, we expanded into online training services as the "Home Care Information Network."

Two events helped me understand who Tom Williams was. One day, as we walked out of the Milwaukee airport, he encountered an old friend, a single mother he had hired at Blue Cross when no one else would, giving her a chance to move from welfare to work and on to a college degree. After a big hug and brief chat, he introduced me to his former employee, "Tim, this is Congresswoman Gwen Moore, the representative for Wisconsin's 4th congressional district."

The other happened at my first NAHC meeting in October, 1999. Frustrated with the small turnout that final year of IPS, three leading software company owners approached our booth, shook a finger at Tom, and proclaimed, "We've had it. We want a meeting of all the vendors and we want you to call the meeting because if you call it, they will all come." The following month, 12 CEOs showed up in Chicago, vented their grievances, formulated a plan, and the Homecare Information Technology Council was born. HITC published magazines and educational CDs, represented the vendor community with a common voice, and created the "CEO School," a longtime fixture on the morning before the NAHC Annual Meeting. It was HITC that inspired NAHC founding president Val Halamandaris to create the Home Care Technology Association of America.

Anniversary #2:

Tom WilliamsOn January 9, 2009, Tom was taken from us, without any previous diagnosis or symptoms, by an apparent heart attack. He was 59 years old. Exactly ten years after our initial strategy meetings, and ten years ago last month, I again found myself flying to Milwaukee.

For 10 years we've been on our own

Devastated, Tom's widow and I, assisted by the rest of the team — Michael Siegel, Tom Theimer, Randy Weisheit, and my son, Jeremy, the HCIN videographer — tried to keep things going but Tom's wife was an elementary school teacher and deeply grieving. When we realized she did not have the desire or the time to run Tom's company, Theimer and Weisheit took over HCIN and I purchased the rights to HCAR. Siegel found a home at Simione Consulting until he retired. Jeremy took his video skills to Relias Learning, stayed a few years, and then took a hard right turn into the outdoors as owner of Outlaw Jeep Adventures in Moab, Utah.

Now we are in June, 2009. As owner, editor, publisher, and principle writer, I set out to keep HCAR going by myself. I was humbled and gratified to see the sponsors sticking with me, assuring me I could step into Tom's shoes and that HCAR was worth the effort. By July, to make it more my own, I made a slight change to the newsletter's name and updated its look and feel. That summer, Home Care Technology Report debuted with my name on it in thousands of inboxes. Over the years, most people began to refer to it as The Rowan Report. We gave in and are starting to use that name more often.

That brings us to today, the 20th anniversary of my tenure at Home Care Technology Report and the 10th anniversary of the passing of my friend and mentor, and the one responsible for launching this second career of mine. I still relish the responsibility of finding valuable news for you every week and, though I cannot promise you another ten years, I do promise that, when the time comes, I will hand the keyboard over to someone with the expertise and integrity to carry on, perhaps improve on, the tradition Tom and I began 20 years ago today.

I'll close with a hearty thanks to all 13,000 subscribers who read our words every week and to the sponsors that make it all possible. Here are some of my favorite stories from the last 20 years:

December 7 Tribute: From War Hero to Father to Home Health Patient (12/7/2011)

It Is Time for CMS to Figure Out the Difference Between Typos and Crimes (3/18/2015)

Reflections on A Sad Visit to Wisconsin (1/21/2009)

Friends and Colleagues Offer Their Memories of Tom Williams (1/14/2009)

Editor's Comments on the Occasion of the Passing of NAHC President Val Halamandaris (8/2/2017)

Private Duty Home Care Suffers From Extreme Competition (11/15/2017)

Editor signature
Tim Rowan



Editor's Reflections on 20 Years of Home Care Tech Report
Editor Tim Rowan recounts the origin story of Home Care Technology: The Rowan Report
 
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During the 4th Quarter of 2019, web sites of the above advertisers were visited by home care and hospice executives and staff 3664 times.

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Last Week's Most-Read Stories:
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.

As of this date, approximately 32,703,000 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.


WEBINAR: 5 Crucial Ways to Prepare for PDGM

Sponsored by: HealthCare Synergy

Featuring: Michael Tidd, LVN, COS-C, COS-D
Dates: November 13
Time:
10:00 am PST / 1:00 am EST

Information and Registration

Agencies are rapidly trying to prepare for the PDGM payment model. We will show you the most crucial ways an agency can prepare for the internal changes needed for PDGM. While most agencies are focusing on how to instruct clinicians on the change, PDGM has the most impact on office functions. Attend and gain insight on the things the agency needs to be doing now to prepare for January 1, 2020.

Objectives:
1. Learn agency level changes that can be implemented to be successful in 2020
2. Understand how to approach budgeting and finances under PDGM
3. What do your clinicians really need to know to ensure the agencies continued success

Michael Tidd has over 19 years of experience in the Home Care Industry and is a frequent speaker at HealthCare Synergy Workshops and Webinars. He is a Software Developer, LVN and Certified in ICD-9/10 Coding and OASIS (COS-C, HCS-D). As the Clinical Manager for HealthCare Synergy, he directs the Outsourced Management Services, assists in directing the development of the Healthcare Assistant Web Edition, oversees the Clinical Documentation Auditing provided to clients and directs the Clinical Form Development for the Healthcare Assistant Web Edition. Michael continues to educate agencies in the ongoing regulations that CMS produces, the proper application of the Medicare Conditions of Participation and completing timely, accurate and defendable clinical documentation to survive in the current Medicare Reimbursement Model.


Webinar: Post-Acute Care Quality Reporting Programs

Presented by: CMS

Date: Thursday, November 14

Time: 2:00 - 3:00 pm EST

Fee: Free

Description: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will be hosting a webinar for Medicare-certified hospice providers to provide an overview on Hospital Quality Reporting Program (HQRP) requirements.

During this webinar, CMS subject matter experts will provide information on the following topics:

  • Hospice Item Set (HIS) reporting requirements;
  • HQRP compliance cycle;
  • How to achieve hospice compliance;
  • CAHPs survey requirements; and
  • How to switch CAHPS survey research vendors.

CMS will answer questions at the end of the webinar as time permits.

Register

Conference: Successful Home Health Transformation

Hosted Dixon Healthcare Solutions, Inc.

Date: December 5-6
Location
: Bally's, Las Vegas
Time: 7:00 am - 4:00 pm
Speakers: Richard K. Dixon, Cheryl Peltekis, RN, Meaghan McCormick, Esq., Donna Floyd, RN, BSN, J'non Griffin, RN, MHA, HCS-D, BCCH-C, COS-C, WCC; Annette Lee, RN, MS, HCS-D, COS-C; Cory Mertz, managing partner for a leading healthcare M&A firm.

Information and Registration

Approved for up to 10 hours of Continuing Nursing Education by Corexcel, an accredited provider by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

 


 

WEBINAR: PDGM Preparation: Operational Strategies

Sponsored by Kornetti & Krafft Health Care Solutions & MedBridge

Date: December 5
Time: 1:00 pm EST

Information and Registration

Knowing that resources are tight as PDGM approaches, Kornetti & Krafft is offering a free overview of OASIS D1 to ensure that changes to this critical data collection instrument do not get lost in the shuffle.

What is Included:

  • Highlight key differences between OASIS D and D1
  • Make an informed decision about the use of "=" as a response
  • As an outsourced OASIS/Coding company, the most commonly seen OASIS errors and proven strategies for success will be included.

 


WEBINAR: Manage Intake Orders with WellSky + Forcura

Date: December 5
Time: 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm EST

Information and registration

Jonathan Fluhart, Intrepid USA VP of Technology & Process Excellence and Windy Adams, Forcura Director of Strategic Partnerships, will share how the WellSky and Forcura workflow solution is enabling Intrepid USA to:

  • Go 100% paperless by digitizing all faxes and eliminating manual document scanning
  • Streamline intake documentation by driving referrals, authorizations and labs to one centralized location
  • Instantly reconcile signed orders and notifications that documents are ready for approval and billing

Homecare 100 *January 19-22
JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort
Miami, FL

https://www.homecare100.com/

Training: Sales Coach Certification

Presented by Healthcare Strategica, LLC

Featuring: Michael Ferris
Location: Westin Lake Las Vegas Resort, Henderson, NV
Date: February 18-21

Information and registration

Your sales management team is critical to the results from the sales teams they manage, day to day, month to month and quarter to quarter. The goal must be to drive more admissions with less expenditure on sales and marketing. The best way to do that is to is to increase the number of admissions generated by EVERY member of the sales team.  That will drive down your acquisition cost of each new admission – this metric, cost of sales per admission, is the one that will drive most top and bottom line success!

Sales Managers have four basic functions – manage, train, coach and mentor. For most, the greatest challenge is to have enough time to spend in the field coaching ALL of their sales professionals.  We know, though our research and experience, that the NUMBER ONE way to increase the results of home health and hospice sales professionals is to have regular, effective sales coaching.  Coaching WILL drive the most results consistently.

Sales Coach is the newest, fastest growing position in home care. A Sales Coach can spend the entire week in the field or in the training room, wherever you need them. This frees up your time and allows you to be able to manage a larger team, spend more time where it counts, have consistent on-boarding practices and a happier sales team that is hitting and exceeding all expectations.

Our new Sales Coach Certification Course is the answer to having a Sales Coach up and operational in a hurry. Sales Coach Certification Course participants will get actual time working with and coaching Bootcamp attendees. And, because this is a very nice, secluded, non-gaming location, there is not the same level of distraction you find at a casino on the strip.

Who should attend?

•            Sales Coaches
•            Sales Managers who want to improve their coaching, training and onboarding
•            Senior Leadership who want to understand how to maximize their sales structure for success

Location:

Westin Lake Las Vegas Resort located in Henderson, NV – about a 30 minute drive from the Las Vegas airport.  Uber or Lyft is your best option but if you drive, parking is free!  Once you are there, you have everything you need and a shuttle to take you to restaurants or stores in the area.  The special room rate is available for a few days before and after the event, so if you want to hit the golf course or just relax, please come early or stay late.  This is a non-gaming property that has restaurants, bars, pools, putting green, sport court, gym, hiking and biking trails.


FREE Webinar: How to Capitalize on Your Agency's Most Precious Resource: Data

Sponsored by: AlayaCare

Featuring: Naomi Goldapple, Head of AlayaCare’s R&D division, AlayaLabs, and Simon Maxwell-Stewart, Lead Data Scientist

Date: March 11
Time: 2:00 pm EDT

Information and Registration

Learn how home care organizations are using machine learning and advanced analytic techniques to deliver better clinical outcomes and improved employee experiences.


Free Webinar Series: Presented by Simione Consultants

The 5 Top Reasons Why Post-Acute Deals Fail & What To Do About Them
Date: March 24
Time: 2:00-3:00 PM EDT
Presenter: Laura Gramenelles, RN, BSN, HCS-D, COS-C, Director, Mergers & Acquisitions, Simione Healthcare Consultants
Register


WEBINAR: Key Documentation Issues for 2020 & the Future

A 90-Minute Lunch & Learn Audio Conference by Elizabeth E. Hogue, Esq. Health Care Attorney

Date: March 18
Time:
1:00 - 2:30 EDT

Encore date:
March 25; On-demand recording available


Information and Registration

Documentation remains a key requirement for home care providers as the consequences for inadequate documentation become more severe.

  • What can home health agencies do to avoid denials by ZPICs, RACs, etc., for lack of homebound status and reasonable and necessary care?
  • What kind of documentation must home health agencies, hospices, private duty agencies and HME companies maintain regarding gifts to referral sources and payments to physicians who make referrals to them?
  • How can providers avoid an increase in enforcement action in this area?
  • What kinds of documentation problems are private duty agencies facing with regard to recoupments from state Medicaid Programs?
  • What dangers do electronic medical records cause for all types of home health providers?
  • Is it true that if it wasn't documented, it wasn't done?
Gather your staff members to emphasize effective documentation yet again. Real examples of cases involving problematic documentation will be presented. Questions and case examples are welcome, and extensive handouts will be provided for use by staff members.

Conference: The 17th Annual World Health Care Congress

17 Years of Empowering and Connecting Leaders in Health Care Transformation

The World Health Care Congress (WHCC20) has been rescheduled and will take place later this year. Given the current circumstances and the impact of COVID-19, direction from Washington, DC officials, and information from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO), the health, safety, and well-being of our staff, speakers, attendees, sponsors, and partners is of utmost importance to us. We will announce new dates for the 2020 Congress shortly. Please check back for updates.

Information and Registration

It’s never too soon to begin planning your experience at the 2020 World Health Care Congress. View the agenda snapshot and gain access to 100+ sessions across 15+ learning tracks:

  • Payer Transformation
  • Member Engagement and Retention
  • Provider Transformation
  • Care Delivery Integration
  • Medicaid & Health Policy
  • Behavioral Health - NEW IN 2020!
  • SDoH Business Strategy
  • SDoH Tech
  • Pop Health Analytics
  • AI & ML Applications - NEW IN 2020!
  • Innovation & Investments
  • Front Line Leadership
  • Women Leaders in Health Care
  • Self-Insurance Strategy
  • Worksite Clinics
  • Direct Contracting
  • Workplace Mental Health
  • Benefits Adviser Leadership
  • Medical Travel


Seminars Webinars - NAHC and HHFMA PDGM Roadshow 

Sponsored by: The National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC), Home Care and Hospice Financial Managers Association (HHFMA), and NAHC Forum of State Associations, have joined together to co-host 12 intensive, one-day seminars across the country to prepare home health operators for PDGM.  

The Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) is here and home health agencies are already dealing with the most important change to home health payment in the 21st century. What is working? What is causing problems? Agencies need the latest information and advice on how to make sure their businesses prosper in the PDGM era.

Dates and Locations:

NAHC has announced that they are replacing their live PDGM Summits with a series of four, live-streamed sessions.

Dates: April 28 & 29

Additional Information and Registration To Be Announced Soon!


Conference: Leading Age Leadership Conference

Hosted by: VNAA, Elevating Home, and Leading Age

In light of the President’s national emergency declaration to address the coronavirus pandemic, LeadingAge is postponing the 2020 Leadership Summit originally scheduled April 20-22 to August 10-12, 2020 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC.

We understand that the possibility or reality of COVID-19 means all-hands-on-deck at our member communities and travel bans for our Business Partners, with a singular focus on the health and welfare of residents, clients, staff, and families.

LeadingAge will continue to assist with information and resources to help you respond to COVID-19. You’ll find a clearinghouse of resources—updated daily—at leadingage.org/coronavirus-resources.

If you registered for the conference, you will be sent an email with information on your registration and hotel reservation.

Information and Registration

With the Leadership Summit, LeadingAge has designed an event for forward-thinking leaders to connect, engage in dialogue, and deepen their knowledge about the future—how we can shape it, and the paths to get there together.

 


*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.



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.


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

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