Home Health Groupings Model (HHGM) Webinar Recording

The Bipartisan Budget Act signed into law last week included Home Health Payment Reform based on the Home Health Groupings Model (HHGM) that had previously been proposed by CMS.

The law calls for the new payment model to go into effect in 2020 and a Technical Expert Panel to consult with CMS for the rulemaking. With many details yet to be determined, it is expected that the key concepts of the previous HHGM proposal will be the foundation of this reform.

Continue reading “Home Health Groupings Model (HHGM) Webinar Recording”

HHAS and Work Schedules

Nearly half of all jobs in the U.S. require workers to adjust to new schedules or locations. Forty-five percent of home health aides (HHAs) work in home health care and 75% of all HHAs have to adapt to changing work schedules. For registered nurses (RNs), 65% have to adapt to changing work schedules.

In almost a quarter (23%) of jobs, work location changes more than four times per year, and for HHAs, that’s 69%, compared to RNs at 14%.    

Selected Occupations and Percent of Jobs That Require Employees to Change Work Schedules or Change Work Locations More Than Four Times per Year, 2017

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Jobs with changing work schedules or work locations in 2017 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2018/jobs-with-changing-work-schedules-or-work-locations-in-2017.htm (visited February 02, 2018).

If you are interested in competitor data by agency or county level, click here to visit our web page on Business Intelligence or email info@fazzi.com.

Social Security Numbers Are Being Removed from all Medicare Cards by April 2019

Medicare Cards Will No Longer Have Social Security Numbers – Here’s What You Need to Know

Social Security Numbers are being removed from all Medicare cards by April 2019. A new Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) will replace the SSN-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN) on the new Medicare cards used for Medicare transactions like billing, eligibility status, and claim status. Beginning in April 2018, CMS will start mailing the new Medicare cards with the MBI to all Medicare beneficiaries in phases by geographic location.

There will be a transition period beginning in April 2018 and running through December 31, 2019. Beginning in October 2018, through the transition period, when providers submit a claim using a patient’s valid and active Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN), CMS will return both the HICN and the MBI on every remittance advice. During the transition period, Agencies can use either the HICN or the MBI to exchange data.

Starting January 1, 2020, all providers will submit claims using MBIs, no matter what date the services were provided.

Begin to plan now for this change to assure everyone is educated and, all of your processes are tested and effective well before December 2019. The details to this initiative can be found here.

What Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are Important for Home Health Agencies?

What Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) should Home Health leaders be setting for their agencies? Let’s hear from Cindy Campbell…

Key Performance Indicators

Establishing the right metrics is critical, but only part of a success story! A deeper, clear understanding of underlying processes and behaviors which “move the metrics” is the sweet spot needed by today’s agencies to achieve success clinically and financially. We call these Key Performance Behaviors or “KPBs”; hardwiring your organization for success.

Discuss how to hard wire the right KPBs for your agency with Cindy.

Learn More

Home Health Compare Quality Charts Updated

The Home Health Compare results were updated on January 24, 2018.

For the Quality of Patient Care measures, 12 measures improved, with improvement in bed transfer seeing the most of improvement of 1.5%, followed by improvement in management of oral medications (increase of 1.4%). Depression assessment conducted slightly decreased. (Collection period April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017.)

The acute care hospitalizations measure improved again this quarter, from 16.4% to 16.2%. The urgent, unplanned care in the emergency room measure worsened with an increase of 0.1%. (Collection period April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017.)

Updates were also made for HHCAHPS measures and the national averages continue to remain the same. The data collection period for these measures and the Star Ratings is July 2016 to June 2017.

Home Health Compare Star Rating

The national average for the Quality of Patient Care Star Rating remained at 3.5 stars, although the percent of agencies with 3.5 stars declined from 20% to 19%. The percent of agencies with 4 stars increased to 17% from 16%, and agencies with 4.5 stars decreased to 10% from 11%.

CMS will remove the influenza immunization received for current flu season measure from the Quality of Patient Care Star Rating effective with the April 2018 refresh. The rationale is due to differences across states’ regulations regarding transporting and administering vaccinations; no exclusion made for patients who were offered the vaccination and refused; and no exclusion made for patients who cannot receive the vaccination due to contradictions. The measure will continue to be reported on Home Health Compare to encourage vaccination, and the measure will be monitored by CMS to ensure the rates do not decrease.1

To see where the 5 star agencies are located, visit our Home Health Compare page and use the drop down for Star Ratings at the agency level. You can also compare measures by state, by year, by release date and, the top 10 or top 20 percent.

1 Centers for Medicare & Medicaid. Home Health Quality Initiative. Updates.

Hospice Compare Updated

CMS has released the second round of public reporting on all Medicare-certified hospice providers along with the first release of national averages for CAHPS® Hospice (see below). Individual agency data for CAHPS® Hospice will be published in the first quarter 2018.

The reporting period for this release of Hospice Compare includes the calendar year of 2016. National averages for all measures showed a slight increase from the previous reporting period. The national CAHPS® Hospice data collection period is April 2015 to March 2016.

Hospice Compare reported results are in compliance with the first of two reporting requirements from CMS in order for hospice providers to avoid the 2% payment penalty. There are no exemptions for this requirement. All Medicare-certified hospice providers must report HIS data regardless of their size or average daily census. CMS will also publish quality star ratings for hospices in the future.

View state level Hospice Compare charts

National Averages for CAHPS® Hospice Survey Measures

Measure National Average
Hospice Team Communication 80%
Getting Timely Care 78%
Treating Family Member with Respect 90%
Getting Emotional and Religious Support 89%
Getting Help for Symptoms 75%
Getting Hsopice Care Training 72%
Rating of Hospice 80%
Willingness to Recommend 85%

Source: National CAHPS Hospice Survey data. Data.Medicare.gov

Hospice CAHPS scores are now more important than ever! If you’d like to learn more about Fazzi’s Hospice CAHPS service, please contact us today or call 800-379-0361.

Home Health Compare Quality Charts Updated

The Home Health Compare results were updated on October 24, 2017. However, the Quality of Patient Care measures were refreshed using the same data collection period as last quarter, January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016.

The value of some OASIS-based measures may have changed slightly to reflect submission of late or corrected OASIS data. The OASIS data reflects revisions or corrections made by HHAs as of Friday, Aug 25, 2017[1]. Individual measures and Star Ratings for some agencies may be different from last quarter, but the national averages have had very slight changes. Continue reading “Home Health Compare Quality Charts Updated”

Introducing Case Management Credentials for Home Health and Hospice

Introducing our Industry’s Only Case Management Credentials

We are pleased to introduce our industry’s only case management credentials:  The Certified Home Health Case Manager (CHHCM) and the Certified Hospice Case Manager (CHCM).

Why are these credentials so important?

  • Because case management proficiency is central to Quadruple Aim: enhancing the patient experience, lowering costs, managing burgeoning populations while increasing joy in the work itself.
  • Because the new Home Health Conditions of Participation (CoPs) and the expanding Hospice Item Set (HIS) and other regulatory changes require new levels of expertise. Today, case managers must master goal directed, patient centered care planning; clinical best practices; interdisciplinary team management; time management; documentation and more — all while putting the patient first and, yes, loving the job!
  • These credentials demonstrate that a person possesses the knowledge and expertise to perform this critically important function.

About the CHHCM and CHCM:

  • These credentials can be achieved by taking the CHHCM and/or CHCM examination online through the Fazzi Learning Center.
  • No need to leave the office, no travel expenses, test on your own time.
  • An eight-week online preparation course for these examinations begins October 30.
  • With the bundle package, participants may choose the Home Health Track or the Hospice Track or they may do both. They may also choose to take the CHHCM exam or the CHCM exam or pay a small upgrade fee to do both.
  • Additionally, certificate holders will enter a collaborative community of case management professionals and receive ongoing complimentary best practice webinars and other resources.
  • Anyone who has completed Fazzi’s previous Case Management Certificate of Completion program within the last 18 months may register for this new preparation course and the examinations at a discounted price.
  • Participants will be inspired by course instructor Cindy Campbell’s expertise, energy and zeal for case management (even those who may fear that the discipline becoming a “lost art”).

View Comprehensive FAQ & Register Now

August Compliance Newsletter

OASIS C-2 Questions and Answers

Have you ever come across an unusual patient situation that didn’t seem to ‘fit’ the OASIS? Human beings are so complex and our lives are so varied that it’s no wonder we sometimes find ourselves scratching our heads when trying to select an OASIS response. CMS no longer provides one centralized system to answer and publish quarterly OASIS Questions and Answers, but we have had 20 pages of Q&A’s released from the November 16th/17th Home Health Quality Reporting Training conducted by CMS. Another training was held May 3rd/4th and additional Q&As should be released sometime in August if the timeline is similar to the November event. You can find the November Q&As (released February 2017) on the CMS web page by scrolling to the downloads section at the bottom of the page. Continue reading “August Compliance Newsletter”