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Volume 23.06

On Friday, March 31, 2023, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued the proposed rule, Medicare Program; FY 2024 Hospice Wage Index and Payment Rate Update, Hospice Conditions of Participation Updates, Hospice Quality Reporting Program Requirement, and Hospice Certifying Physician Provider Enrollment Requirements.  The proposed rule is substantial in its scope and deserves the attention of all hospices.  The following are included, but not all inclusive of proposals and discussions.

FY 2024 Payment Modifications: For FY2024, beginning October 1, 2023, hospice rates are proposed to increase by a net 2.8% and the national aggregate CAP is proposed to increase to $33,396.55.

Proposed national payment rates, subject to wage index adjustment, are as follows:

Routine home care (1st 60 days)        $      217.74
Routine home care (days 61+)            $      171.86
Continuous home care (hourly)          $        65.06
Inpatient respite care                          $      506.38
General inpatient care                        $   1,142.20

Hospices Failing to Meet Hospice Quality Reporting Requirements: Payment reductions will be increased to 4% from the current 2% for hospices failing to meet HQRP. 

Physicians Ordering or Certifying Hospice Services: The prosed rule requires physicians who order or certify hospice services for Medicare beneficiaries be enrolled in Medicare or validly opted-out as a prerequisite for payment for the hospice period.

Telehealth: Proposed regulation related to the use of telehealth to conduct the face-to-face encounters and the elimination of a regulation relating to the use of technology-based routine home care visits during the COVID-19 PHE.

Significant attention is given to steps that CMS is taking or considering regarding Medicare enrollment for the purpose of reducing fraudulent and/or abusive practices, including revision of Form CMS-855A.

Due to the focus of CMS and federal legislators on hospice integrity, the upcoming Hospice Financial Management and Administration Conference, scheduled for November 9-10, 2023, will provide significant focus on integrity in financial reporting and administrative practices, including the final rule when issued.

The proposed rule is available here


Attendees of the 2023 Hospice Financial Management & Administration Conference can now make reservations at the Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club, Ft. Lauderdale, FL https://lagomar.com/.

Conference dates are November 9-10, 2023.  Individual reservations can be made by calling (855) 829-2923 and asking for  “The Health Group, LLC Hospice Financial Administration & Management conference” or online at https://lagomar.com/

When making reservations online, go to reservations, click on group code and enter 2311THEHEA.  Select the dates you will be staying, even if the dates are indicated as not available, select them and your room type.  All attendees are being offered Executive One Bedroom Suites at $235/night.  Resort fees have been waived for our attendees.  If you have a problem, please call the hotel.  The hotel is making the $235/night available for three (3) days prior and three (3) days after the program dates.

The property is not accepting reservations from the public yet for November dates; however, once available, the property expects, as usual, to sell out.  We encourage you if planning on attending this program to make reservations as soon as possible.