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  • CMS Drops Home Health Payment Plan Opposed by APTA

    After receiving significant opposition from APTA, the APTA Home Health Section, and other professional and consumer advocacy organizations, the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has backed off on a proposed rule that would have dramatically altered the home health care payment landscape in ways that would have reduced care.

    Issued on November 1, the home health prospective payment system final rule for 2018 does not finalize the proposed Home Health Groupings Model (HHGM), a payment system that, among other changes, would have removed therapy service-use thresholds from the payment mix. The proposed HHGM prompted immediate outcry from a wide range of stakeholders, with APTA characterizing the rule as one that would create "perverse financial incentives" for reductions in care in home health.

    In a fact sheet published in conjunction with the release of the final rule, CMS states that it won't adopt the HHGM model for 2018 and instead "will take additional time to further engage with stakeholders to move towards a system that shifts the focus from volume of services to a more patient-centered model."

    APTA staff are reviewing the final rule and will share more details in the coming days, but the news that the HHGM will not be implemented in 2018 represents a win for patients and the association.

    "APTA had significant concerns that the HHGM would have a dramatic, negative effect on patient care," said Kara Gainer, APTA director of regulatory affairs. "Together with the Home Health Section and many of our members, we initiated a strong congressional and regulatory advocacy campaign to stop CMS from adopting the HHGM. It appears our efforts—along with those of many others in the home health industry—were compelling."


    • I don’t know why cna keeps cutting homecare. When in fact HH is the cheapest cost in keeping patient healthy at their own home. But they have their own reason to us HH workers I believe I as a PT am more effective helping mypatients safe and functional in their living situation therapy is best applied to their daily living activities.

      Posted by Rey veneracion on 11/2/2017 8:40 AM

    • this is great news; what about the same issue being proposed in the SNF Post acute setting? That will also have a dramatic, negative effect on patient care as well as a negative impact on the rehab professionals involved.

      Posted by Robyn Ligotti -> AFU[AN on 11/2/2017 8:59 AM

    • I would like to thank APTA, specificallly, Kara Gainer and Justin Elliott for all their hard work and assistance in responding to the HH PPS Proposed Rule. As the President of the Home Health Section of the APTA, she was instrumental in drafting the Section's response to this proposed rule as well. The Section membership greatly appreciates all the hard work being done on behalf of the pst-acute care community and we look forward to continued collaboration in developing payment model alternatives that incorporate stakeholder input. Great job!

      Posted by Diana Kornetti on 11/2/2017 11:25 AM

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