Volume 10, Number 44 December  8, 2021



Dear Healthcare at Home Colleague,

Before summarizing this week's news, we have a couple of newsworthy announcements, and maybe an opinion or two.

While the fate of COVID vaccination mandates ping pongs about in courts, overwhelming evidence remains clear that sending unvaccinated caregivers into patient homes is a terrible idea. The CDC reported recently that the infection rates per 100,000 individuals were six to ten times higher among unvaccinated people compared with vaccinated people of the same age group. Since the arrival of the Delta variant, the unvaccinated have been filling hospital beds at an alarming rate. Except in rare cases where other health issues are a factor, vaccinated people in all age groups experience mild, cold-like symptoms and are rarely hospitalized. 

We have been telling you about a federal grant program, "Flex For Checks," that pays home care agencies, their workers, and their patients/clients a modest cash reward for every COVID shot received and registered with the program, whether by a client or an employee. Though the successful program is on schedule to exhaust its grant funds early next year, there is still time to take advantage of it. Those in the best position to gather remaining funds are home care agencies already participating but who still have staff and patients/clients that have either not been vaccinated or who have received the shot but have not yet registered it. In other words, "time's a wastin'," get busy!

If it is inspiration you need, consider the efforts of a participant in Florida whom we will call TW. She took the grant program seriously and has registered so many vaccinations in her community that Flex For Checks has sent her over $25,000 to date.

 

 

 

We have also been paying attention to certain legislations being proposed in Washington. The Choose Home Care Act of 2021, S. 2562/H.R. 1544 is a cost-effective, patient preferred, home-based, extended care benefit as a supplement to the existing home health benefit. It promises to support patients to leave the hospital and recover at home with a mix of expanded skilled nursing, therapy, personal care, telehealth services and more. Just as importantly, it is predicted to reduce Medicare spending. The National Association for Home Care and Hospice and the Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare are backing the bill, which is receiving bi-partisan support in the House and Senate. Both urge you to help by contacting your own elected officials.

We are also keeping a close eye on the Build Back Better Act. Whatever your political position on government spending, this bill does include $150 billion (over 10 years) for in-home care. Coupled with the end of supplemental unemployment payments, this assistance to allow agencies to offer higher hourly wages could mean an influx of applicants next year. States must increase spending in order to receive matching federal funds, so, if it passes, you will need to write your Medicaid officials and state legislators. This potential good news comes with a warning, however. Resist the impulse to hire indiscriminately. It will still cost you between $2,000 and $4,000 every time you hire the wrong person, the ones who disappear after orientation and training. There is a way to mitigate this loss; we will be talking about it extensively next year. 

 

 

Now to the News

Netsmart is hosting an important, free webinar on December 15. Experts from the National Association for the Support of Long-Term Care will present their view of the future of the entire Post-Acute Care sector. Click on the headline below for registration details.

A new provider of only in-home physical therapy services is rapidly growing from its origins in California to 22 states so far, with more to come. They bill through Medicare Part B and have referral relationships with health systems and orthopedic groups. Are they a potential partner? Competitor? You decide after reading our interview with one of the founders of "Luna Physical Therapy."

Another provider that is expanding across the country, from its home in Atlanta to the Pacific coast. The Braff Group just announced it has facilitated the acquisition of a major California Medicare, MediCal, and Private Duty provider by Aveanna, the company formed only four years ago through the merger of PSA Healthcare and Epic Health Services. This was not Aveanna's first acquisition, nor will it be its last.

Have a great week. Keep making a difference!

Editor signature
Tim Rowan



Aveanna Healthcare Acquires Accredited Home Care
Braff Group facilitates another major home care acquisition.

Airrosti and Luna Partner to Improve Access for Musculoskeletal Care
Growing out-patient, in-home PT provider may be Home Health partner...or competitor.

NASL Experts Plan Free Webinar on Future of Post-Acute Care
"2022 Long-Term & Post-Acute Care Industry Outlook: NASL Experts Chart the Path Ahead" to be presented by Netsmart, December 15.



During the 1st Quarter of 2023, web sites of the above advertisers were visited by home care and hospice executives and staff 4163 times.

To inquire about placing your message here, contact:

Kristin@rowanresources.com

As of this date, approximately 43,945,000 Baby Boomers have become Medicare eligible.

 

Last Week's Most-Read Stories:

AlayaCare/Delta Announcement Inspires Memory Lane Trip
Last week's acquisition announcement centered on the future, but Keith Crownover's 40 years at Delta cannot be allowed to end quietly. Editor Tim Rowan shares some personal memories.

Security Breaches Plague Healthcare Providers
Healthcare is hit by 30 percent of all cyber attacks, more than any other industry. Help is out there. We list a few resources.




Upcoming Events

*The Rowan Report will see you there.

FREE WEBINAR: New, Science-Based Methodology Reduces Cost of Recruitment and Retention

Presented by: The Rowan Report

Featuring: Eric Becker, CEO, MiliMatch

Date: Thursday, March 18

Time: 3:00 pm EST; Noon PST

Recorded version available.

 

Agenda:

Every time a home care agency hires and trains a new caregiver, it invests about $4,500, which is wasted if that new hire does not work out, often before working a first shift. MiliMatch CEO Eric Becker will explain the company's patented product/service, based on the science of Applied Cognitive Linguistics, which has been proven to help home care agencies avoid those costly bad hires.


FREE WEBINAR: Combat the Great Resignation and Reduce Employee Turnover by 40%

Presented by: National Minority Health Association

Date: Tuesday, May 24

Time: 10:00 AM Pacific; 1:00 PM Eastern 

Information and Registration

 

Agenda
As organizations plan for the future, they must cultivate a happier, healthier workforce. Most CEOs, CFOs, HR professionals, and other business leaders are eager to know the true impact of financial wellness. We are gathering to discuss and explore how prioritizing employee financial wellness can help increase caregiver retention and productivity at no cost to your businesses.

 


Gulf Coast Regional Conference & Exposition

Presented by: Home Care Associations of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama

Date: July 18-20

Venue: Grand Hotel Marriott Resort

Location: Point Clear, Alabama

Information and Registration


2022 NAHC Financial Management Conference & Exposition *

Date: July 24-26
Venue: Caesar's Palace, Las Vegas

Information and Registration

 

Register for the in-person conference - starting at $750 for NAHC members or $1,025 for non-members - or for the digital only content - $400 for members and $600 for non-members. If you register for the in-person conference, you'll get access to all of the digital content.


2022 ONC Virtual Tech Forum 

Sponsored by: Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT

Location: Online

Dates: September 9, 16, and 23

Information and Registration

ONC has posted the high-level agenda and opened up registration for the 2022 ONC Virtual Tech Forum on HealthIT.gov. This year's event takes place during three consecutive Fridays in September (9th, 16th, 23rd). As in years past, the Tech Forum will feature industry perspectives on the progress made in health IT over the past year, and highlight how we can continue to advance health technology to improve patient care, health equity, data exchange, and interoperability.

MHCA 52nd Annual Meeting & Expo

Sponsored by: Minnesota Home Care Association

Date: October 12-14
Venue: Breezy Point Resort
City: Breezy Point, MN

Information and Registration

2022 NAHC Annual Meeting & Exposition *

"Connection 4.0: Linkup"

Date: October 23-25
Venue: America's Center Convention Complex
Location: St. Louis, MO

Information and Registration

This year, we want to celebrate one of the most meaningful touchstones of our industry — connection. At the Home Care and Hospice Conference and Expo, we'll explore ideas around connection and community to help attendees reach their stakeholders in authentic and meaningful ways.

New technology, workforce developments, and the importance of high standards in quality care continue to push our community of clinicians and providers to revamp their strategies and skill sets. This event is the meeting point for you to uncover groundbreaking ideas, discover new interests, and network with industry pros.

Meet us in St. Louis, Missouri, once known as the "Gateway to the West." So, it is perfectly centered to make those connections even easier for members and attendees from all ends of the U.S. We look forward to linking up with you this October!


2022 Annual Conference
New Mexico Association for Home and Hospice Care

Date: November 3
Venue: CNM Workforce Training Center
City: Albuquerque

Information and Registration

Featuring:


20th Annual Northeast Home Health Leadership Summit

Sponsored by: State Associations of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York (HCA), New York (HCP), Rhode Island, VNAs of Vermont

Dates: January 17-19

Venue: Revere Hotel, Boston

 

Information and Registration


Homecare 100 *

Presented by: Lincoln Healthcare Leadership

Date: January 22-25, 2023
Venue: Ritz-Carlton, Orlando, Grande Lakes, FL

Registration Information


 

Shine Your Light
Illinois HomeCare & Hospice Council Annual Meeting and Exposition

Dates: April 9-10
Venue: NIU Naperville

Information and Registration


FREE WEBINAR: CMS’ Proposed Hospice FY2024 Payment Rule: Implications for Agencies and the Hospice Community

Sponsored by NAHC
Featuring: Theresa Forster, Katie Wehri

Date: April 11
Time: 12:00 - 1:30 EDT

Details and Registration

 

Description: In addition to routine annual payment changes, CMS proposed FY2024 Hospice Payment Rule, issued on March 31, contains valuable updates on the Hospice Quality Reporting Program (HQRP). Perhaps most notable, the rule's deep dive into utilization trends signals an intensified interest in hospice care patterns, potentially inappropriate behavior in the hospice sector, and program integrity concerns.  Join two of NAHC's hospice experts as they detail proposed changes, including a new requirement that hospice certifying physicians be Medicare enrolled (or to have validly opted-out) and CMS' Requests for Information on hospice utilization and health equity, and examine their potential impact on hospice practice going forward.

Faculty: Theresa M. Forster, NAHC VP for Hospice Policy & Programs
Katie Wehri, NAHC Director of Home Health & Hospice Regulatory Affairs


WEBINAR: Audits: What to Do

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

Date: Thursday, April 6
Time: 1:00 - 2:30 EDT

Encore date: April 13
On-demand recording available 24/7
Option to purchase recording and handouts

 

Information and Registration

 

Audio-Conference Description: Home care providers of all types; including home health agencies, private duty agencies, hospices and HME companies; remain targets of audits by various regulators, including but certainly not limited to United Program Integrity Contractors (UPICs). The results of these audits can be devastating because they may threaten the ability of providers to remain in business, especially when overpayments are extrapolated to millions of dollars. Audits of all types must be taken seriously and providers must take action to close audits as quickly as possible! The first thing providers must do is to review records requested by auditors.

The purpose of this teleconference is to give providers detailed steps to follow to avoid adverse consequences of audits. Examples of common issues targeted by auditors will be provided and there will be time for questions and answers.


 

First Joint Conference of the Carolinas

Association for Home & Hospice Care of North Carolina & South Carolina Home Care & Hospice Association

Dates: April 23-26

Venue: Westin

City: Charlotte

Information and Registration 



Rise Above!

Michigan Home Care & Hospice Association Annual Conference

Dates: May 3-5
Venue: Grand Traverse Resort & Spa

Registration and Information

The theme for the Conference is “RISE ABOVE” a fitting recognition of the challenges our industry and each of you overcame in your personal lives and professional careers to navigate the challenges of the past three years.

The MHHA conference presents an opportunity to meet new friends and reacquaint with peers. What better place to rise above, than at the spacious and beautiful Grand Traverse Resort & Spa? This conference has a little bit for every service line and discipline. Wednesday offers a track for Volunteer Managers and Thursday offers a track for Palliative Care as well as many other sessions for Certified Home Health, Hospice, DME and Private Duty Home Care.


2023 Annual Home Health & Hospice Conference
Homecare and Hospice Association of Utah

Date: May 10-11

City: Sandy

Attendee Registration

Exhibitor/Sponsor Registration


2023 Rocky Mountain Home Care, Home Health & Hospice Conference *Presented by: Home Care and Hospice Association of Colorado

Dates: May 18-19
Venue: Beaver Creek


Information and Registration for Attendees and Exhibitors


Home Care Innovation Forum*Presented by: The Influence Group

Dates: June 4-6
Venue: Park Hyatt Aviara 
City: 
Carlsbad, CA


Information and Registration

Featured Speakers:

Partial list of topics:


HI2: Home Care Innovation and Investment Conference *Presented by: Lincoln Healthcare Leadership

Dates: June 12-14
Venue: Swissotel 
City: 
Chicago


Information and Registration

Featured Speakers:


leading ONE vision

Homecare Homebase User Group Meeting

Dates: June 12-14
Venue: Sheraton Dallas Hotel

Information and Registration

Clinical Education Credits
Nationally recognized speakers, eight clinical sessions. Clinicians are encouraged to sign up for the clinical sessions, but are free to jump between clinical and non-clinical topics. Clinical topics include a homecare focus on Wound Care, Value Based Purchasing, Clinical Leadership, conflict resolution, Quality Report, Oasis and more.

Featured Speakers:



Your state or national association meeting or webinar 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



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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.

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