Last week President Biden signed into law a $1.5 trillion spending package, referred to as an “Omnibus Spending Bill”. The legislation will fund the government through September 2022. The Bill also provides significant financial assistance to Ukraine.
For hospices, the Bill includes an extension of the flexibility for hospices to meet the requirement for a face-to-face visit for recertification of eligibility through a virtual visit for 151 days after the end of the COVID-19 PHE. This face-to-face flexibility was part of the CARES Act in 2020. The PHE, expected to end this summer, will allow this flexibility to continue for an additional 151 days or until December 2022.
The bill also contains a one-year extension, from FY2030 to FY2031, of the existing formula used in calculating the annual update to the hospice aggregate limitation (“CAP”).
Unfortunately, the legislation does not include any extensions of the Medicare sequester moratorium. The sequester, suspended during the PHE, is effective April 1, 2022, with a one percent (1%) reduction in Medicare payments. The sequester will be a two percent (2%) reduction in Medicare payments starting July 1, 2022.
HOSPICE MEDICARE ADVANTAGE APPLICATIONS RELEASED
CMS has published information needed for Medicare Advantage Organizations (“MAOs”) interested in participating in the Hospice Benefit Component of the VBID Model, including the scope of the benefit, as well as policies relating to the quality, networking, and payment policies. Additional information is available at Medicare Advantage Value-Based Insurance Design Model | CMS Innovation Center and VBID Model Hospice Benefit Component Overview | CMS Innovation Center.
CMS will be hosting a session on Tuesday, April 5, 2022, to discuss the Medicare Advantage Value-Based Insurance Design (“VBID”) Model and its Hospice Benefit Component. Information is available at Office Hours: 2023 Medicare Advantage Value-Based Insurance Design Model and its Hospice Benefit Component | CMS Innovation Center.
So much is happening in the hospice industry. Don’t miss out on upcoming hospice financial educational opportunities.
Financial Management Conference & Expo (NAHC); July 24-26, 2022, Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, NV
Hospice Financial Management Academy (The Health Group, LLC); September 19-20, 2022, Hotel Monteleone, New Orleans, LA
Home Care and Hospice Conference and Expo (NAHC); October 23-25, 2022, St. Louis, MO