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Health Policy
April 29, 2016

This week the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) added six new quality measures to the Nursing Home Compare website. Three of these six new quality measures are based on Medicare-claims data submitted by hospitals, which is significant because this is the first time CMS is including quality measures that are not based solely on data that are self-reported by nursing homes. These three quality measures measure the rate of rehospitalization, emergency room use, and community discharge among...

Health Policy
April 29, 2016

On April 21, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule (CMS-1645-P) outlining proposed FY 2017 Medicare payment rates and quality programs for Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs). CMS will accept comments on the proposed rule until June 20, 2016.

Based on proposed changes, CMS projects that aggregate payments to SNFs will increase in FY 2017 by $800 million,...

Health Policy
April 29, 2016

Wednesday, May 11 from 3 to 4:30 pm ET

Join the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for an informative discussion of the comparative billing report on Subsequent Nursing Facility Evaluation and Management (E/M) Services (CBR201605), an educational tool focusing on providers who bill CPT codes 99307 through 99310 to report subsequent nursing facility E/M services. During the webinar, providers will interact directly with content specialists and submit questions about the report. See the...

Health Policy
April 29, 2016

Tuesday, May 10 from 2 to 3 pm ET

To Register: Visit MLN Connects Event Registration. Space may be limited, register early.

The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) changes the way Medicare rewards clinicians for providing quality care by streamlining multiple quality programs into a new Quality Payment Program tied to Part B Fee-For-Service payments. With the implementation of MACRA and the replacement of the Sustainable Growth Rate, we will pay clinicians participating in the Merit...

Health Policy
April 22, 2016

This week the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health held a hearing entitled Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015: Examining Physician Efforts to Prepare for Medicare Payment Reforms. The hearing examined the implementation of Medicare payment reforms included in the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015. The hearing focused on how physician organizations and their members, such as the American Medical Association (AMA), American College of Physicians and the American Academy of Family Physicians, are preparing for the successful...

Health Policy
April 22, 2016

Thursday, April 28 from 1:30 to 3 pm ET To

Register: Visit MLN Connects Event Registration. Space may be limited, register early.

This call focuses on infection control, highlighting Antibiotic Stewardship and community-wide efforts, including a presentation from a nursing home administrator. Common concerns related to the clash between individualized, person-centered care and the medical model of controlling infections will also be addressed. This is critical for residents with dementia, who often...

Health Policy
April 22, 2016

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a proposed rule to update Medicare inpatient payments for fiscal year 2017. CMS’s proposal would completely remove the two-midnight rule for the current and past two fiscal years by adjusting fiscal 2017 payment rates. NTOCC applauds CMS’s proposal to reverse the policy and has advocated for its removal since its introduction in 2013. The rule would also require hospitals to provide a notice to Medicare beneficiaries who have been receiving outpatient services for more than 24 hours informing them about the implications of...

Health Policy
April 22, 2016

The Notice of Intent to Apply (NOIA) for the January 1, 2017, program start date of the Medicare Shared Savings Program is available for:

  • Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) not currently participating in the program (initial applicants)
  • Currently participating ACOs with a 2014 start date intending to renew their agreement (renewing applicants)
  • Currently participating ACOs in or applying to the program under Track 3 (two-sided risk model) that intend to apply for the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) 3-Day Waiver

NOIAs must be submitted by 5...

Health Policy
April 15, 2016

The Older American Act Reauthorization Act of 2016 (OAA) passed Congress recently and is expected to be signed into law by the President. The OAA makes important investments in creating a well-trained workforce and in providing person- and family-centered care for older Americans. Among other initiatives, the OAA supports three crucial family caregiver programs:

  • Family Caregiver Support Services program provides a range of support
  • ...
Health Policy
April 15, 2016

“It Always Seems Too Early, until It’s Too Late." National Healthcare Decisions Day raises awareness about the importance of advance care plans. Did you know that beginning in 2016, Advance Care Planning (APC) services can be billed to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule?

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