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This Week in Technology News
"Healthcare in Transition" Message Harsh, Helpful(4/22/2015)
The second annual "Healthcare in Transition" seminar, held last week in Scottsdale, Arizona, challenged home health and home care executives to adapt or die as the U.S. healthcare system changes around them. While perhaps not the easiest messages to hear, the seminar's multi-disciplinary experts delineated problems facing in-home care providers today — and new ones to come in the near future — and offered solutions to help them understand the steps they must take to transform their agencies for survival.
How to Select a CRM for Post-Acute Care(4/22/2015)
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a key business component for post-acute care companies looking to increase sales and improve customer service. A purpose-built CRM system can effectively manage accounts and contacts, track sales efforts and results, reduce time spent on administrative tasks and provide real-time reporting to help your company achieve its goals. If you are at the point where you are ready to invest in a CRM to manage sales efforts and grow your business, you need to be prepared to ask the right questions. Guest writer Adam Bishop shares his experience in the field, with 10 questions to ask when selecting CRM software for post-acute care.
Managed Care Update: Oh, How They Love ObamaCare(4/22/2015)

The next time an insurance company tells you you can only have three visits for a CHF patient who was discharged after a 4-day hospital stay, or the next time your Uncle Charlie begins his rant about repealing the Affordable Care Act, keep this article from Investors Business Daily handy.

Healthcare in Transition Seminar Set for April 13-15(4/1/2015)
Here is a rundown of the seminar agenda that will provide your agency with the tools to THRIVE through the healthcare reform era. Click on the link in this article to register your team for three powerful days at the only seminar sponsored by the publisher of Home Care Technology Report.
SCOTUS Says You Cannot Sue Medicaid(4/1/2015)
The U.S. Supreme Court overturned a 9th U.S. Court of Appeals ruling in an Idaho case. If your state's Medicaid reimbursement rates do not comply with federal law, you are no longer allowed to sue to make them comply.
Keeping an Eye on Mom from a Distance(4/1/2015)
Your mother or father living at home alone are relatively healthy and do not need daily vital sign monitoring and only occasional home health aide visits. They do not think you need to call three times a day to make sure they are still breathing but you remain concerned that something might go wrong and you would have no way of knowing from your home miles away. Did he wake up and get out of bed this morning? Did she turn off the TV and go to bed last night at a decent hour? We tested a middle ground technology, less intrusive than PERS or video supervision, more informative than daily phone calls -- and we recommend the right situation.
Aging2.0 Announces Launch of New Membership Community, Aging2.0 Alliance(4/1/2015)
New interdisciplinary, international, innovation community in senior care is launched; 72 organizations announced as launch members. Opportunity for tech companies, care providers, startups and investors to get acquainted, share insights.
Growth Fuels Procura's $1M Investment in ContinuLink Customer Support(4/1/2015)
Success can be expensive. The Procura Group is announcing a $1 million investment in its implementation and customer support teams in order to keep up with a recent increase in sales.
HIPAA Compliance, Policies Lag Behind Mobile Health Innovations(3/25/2015)
Physician practice software vendor NueMD wanted to know where their industry stands with HIPAA compliance. Working with Porter Research and The Daniel Brown Law Group, they designed a questionnaire to gauge respondents' knowledge of HIPAA's Privacy and Security regulations, compliance measures, and communication methods. The results were every bit as disappointing as those of our own 2013 survey of home health workers. Guest author Mark Healey worked with the Porter Research team to develop this analysis of their survey. He considers the results in light of the emergence of mHealth technologies, which introduce a new layer of complexity to HIPAA compliance.
Tools for Seniors Needed Home Care Tools for Today’s Senior Populations(3/25/2015)
Audrey Kinsella has been a valuable telehealth reporter for us for a number of years. We thought it would both show appreciation to her and provide important information for our readers to give her a forum to describe the new web page, titled, "Seniors Living Safely at Home: Needed Telecare-Ready Tools & Assisters" which she recently added to her popular web site, "Information for Tomorrow."
GAO Says Medicare Advantage Was Overpaid $12 Billion in 2014(3/25/2015)
Found in the MedPAC 2015 Report to Congress, Chapter 9:
  • "Overpaying for home health care has negative financial consequences for the federal budget and the beneficiary..."
  • "In 2013, about 3.5 million Medicare beneficiaries received home health care, and the program spent about $17.9 billion on home health services." (Approximately $5,100 per beneficiary served.)
  • Percentage of Medicare beneficiaries using home health care: 9.3%
  • MedPAC recommendation to control home health fraud, waste, and abuse, perpetrated by a tiny minority: reduce payment rates for all home health providers.
Found in the Government Accountability Office report released at about the same time:
  • Improper payments to Medicare Advantage plans totaled more than $12 billion in 2014.
  • MedPAC recommendations to control MA fraud, waste, and abuse: none.
It Is Time for CMS to Figure Out the Difference Between Typos and Crimes(3/18/2015)
HCTR editor Tim Rowan analyzes the dilemma facing home health providers in the wake of the government's effort to preserve the Medicare Trust Fund with exactly the opposite tactics from the ones that would have worked.

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