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2017 Hospice Proposed Rule: Hospice Compare, payment up, new quality measures

Beth Noyce

2017 Hospice Proposed Rule: Hospice Compare, payment up, new quality measures

Get ready to tell CMS what you think about the newly proposed 2017 Hospice Final Rule.

You've got this. And your views matter.

Hospice agencies Medicare payments will increase about 2.0 percent ($330 million) for 2017, if the FY 2017 Hospice Proposed Rule becomes final. Click here to download both the proposed rule and the proposed FY 2017 Wage Index information. It's your for free.

CMS also proposes in the FY 2017 Hospice Final Rule "enhancing the Hospice Item Set (HIS) by converting it to a "comprehensive patient assessment instrument," (meaning it would no longer be a chart abstraction tool) that includes two new hospice quality measures, which are:

  1. Hospice Visits When Death is Imminent, assessing hospice staff visits to patients and caregivers in the last week of life; 
  2. Hospice and Palliative Care Composite Process Measure, assessing the percentage of hospice patients who received care processes consistent with existing guidelines.

These Hospice Quality Reporting Program (HQRP) updates also include "sharing HQRP data publicly during calendar year 2016" and reporting hospice data publicly on a Hospice Compare web site in calendar year 2017.

Lots of changes!

Good thing Hospice has practiced changing a lot lately. You can do this.

Also in the rule is an update on the Medicare Choices Model (MCCM) testing the waters for a new option for dual-eligible Medicare beneficiaries to receive:

"hospice-like support services from MCCM from participating hospices while receiving care from other Medicare providers for their terminal illness. . . to encourage greater and earlier use of the . . . hospice benefit to determine whether it can improve the quality of life and care received by Medicare beneficiaries, increase beneficiary, family, and caregiver satisfaction, and reduce Medicare or Medicaid expenditures.

Hospice is an interesting business in new ways all the time!
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