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Latest News from the Alliance for Home Health Quality and Innovation
September 2016

Dear Members and Friends:

Join the Alliance and the Visiting Nurse Associations of America (VNAA) next month for the “Home-Based Care: Financial Leadership Forum” October 17th and 18th in Chicago! Dynamic programming includes key topics for financial and administrative leaders on understanding how health care delivery system change, including bundled payments and ACOs, will be affecting how home-based care is financed. Held at theWit downtown, the Forum is meant to bring together financial leaders to discuss a rapidly shifting home health care payment environment. Register now to secure your spot.
 
Additionally, the Alliance is staying on top of the flurry of regulatory and legislative activity. Early this week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the delay of the Pre-Claim Review Demonstration for the remaining states: Florida, Texas, Michigan, and Massachusetts. Florida will no longer begin in the demonstration in October, and will be given at least 30 days' notice from CMS before initiation, with continued staggered implementation of the states to follow. Illinois, however, will remain in the demonstration as already started.
 
In the last month, the Alliance has submitted comments to CMS on the CY 2017 Home Health Prospective Payment System proposed rule (available here) and to RAND on IMPACT Act Development and Maintenance of Post-Acute Care Cross-Setting Standardized Assessment Data (available here). The Alliance will also be submitting comments to CMS on the “Advancing Care Coordination Through Episode Payment Models (EPMs); Cardiac Rehabilitation Incentive Payment Model; and Changes to the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Model (CJR)” proposed rule. The rule proposes to extend the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) model to hip and femur fractures, and would implement a mandatory bundle for certain cardiac episodes. Comments are due to CMS by 5 pm ET on Monday, October 3rd here.
 
Finally, the Alliance and VNAA continue to align programming and events, and will offer joint sponsorship opportunities for all of next year’s events. A full copy of the 2017 Corporate Partnership Prospectus is available online here. For questions, please contact me at tlee@ahhqi.org at any time, or contact the VNAA’s Executive Vice President Taney Hamill at thamill@vnaa.org.



Very Truly Yours,

Teresa L. Lee, J.D., M.P.H.
Executive Director

 
  • On Monday, CMS announced delay of the Pre-Claim Review Demonstration in Florida, Texas, Michigan, and Massachusetts for the time being. Illinois, which began the demonstration on August 3rd, will remain in the demonstration, with an increased focus on educational efforts on submission of pre-claim review requests, documentation requirements, and common reasons for non-affirmation. Florida will no longer begin in the demonstration in October, and will be given at least 30 days' notice from CMS before initiation, with continued staggered implementation of the states to follow. The full announcement from CMS is available here.
  • The comment period is closing soon for theMedicare Program; Advancing Care Coordination Through Episode Payment Models (EPMs); Cardiac Rehabilitation Incentive Payment Model; and Changes to the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Model (CJR)” proposed rule. The proposed rule would expand the existing CJR model to include hip and femur fracture in the 67 existing Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs), and would apply bundled payments to 98 yet-to-be-determined MSAs for heart attacks and bypass surgery, including 90 days post discharge. A full copy of the proposed rule is available here.  Comments are due by 5 pm ET on Monday, October 3rd.
  • The National Quality Forum (NQF) is accepting nominations for a multistakeholder interoperability committee. The committee will work with NQF to develop a framework to review the current challenges and opportunities posed by interoperability, and identify proposed measure concepts to improve interoperability across settings. Nominations are du by Monday, October 3rd. More information is available here.
  • Over the last month, the Alliance submitted comments to CMS on the CY 2017 Home Health Prospective Payment System proposed rule and the IMPACT Act development and maintenance of post-acute care cross-setting standardized assessment data. The Alliance’s final PPS comments are available here, and a copy of the IMPACT Act comments can be found here.
  • Recently, CMS released a fact sheet on “Transforming Post-Acute Care Through Standardization and Care Coordination” available here. The CMS fact sheet focuses on CMS’s efforts toward data standardization in assessment instruments, which are required by the IMPACT Act.
 
  • Register now for the “Home-Based Care: Financial Leadership Forum” October 17th and 18th at theWit in Chicago! The two-day event will empower financial leaders to navigate the critical shift in the payment landscape of home-based healthcare, where only innovative organizations will survive. More information is available here, and you can register here.
  • Call for speaker presentations is now live for the 2017 National Leadership Conference, jointly sponsored by the Alliance and VNAA, in San Diego, Calif. April 19th – 21st. The conference offers organizations the chance to highlight innovative practices in deliver high-quality cost-effective home-based care. More information on the proposal submission process is available here. Submissions are due here by October 31, 2016!
  • Interested in sponsoring Alliance and VNAA events next year? Check out the 2017 Corporate Partnerships Prospectus, available online here. For more information, reach out the Alliance’s Executive Director Teresa Lee at tlee@ahhqi.org or VNAA’s Executive Vice President Taney Hamill at thamill@vnaa.org.
  • On June 30th, the Alliance hosted “Framing the Future of Health Care in America,” which included the release of case studies and appendices that will inform the upcoming independent publication of the Future of Home Health paper. Kathleen Gilmartin, CEO of Interim HealthCare, Sally Rodriguez, Director, Avalere, and Dr. Steven Landers, President and CEO of VNA Health Group. Materials are available here, while a replay can be watched here.
  • Check out the Alliance’s new state one-pagers on home health’s role in post-acute care! You can also check out the updated patient and workforce state one-pagers and packets with information from the 2015 Home Health Chartbook and supplements. Updated one pagers are available on our website: http://ahhqi.org/home-health/state-data
  • The Alliance (@AHHQI) will host the September edition of the #HomeHealthChat on Twitter, today, September 27th at 2 pm ET with co-host the Home Health Sections of the American Physical Therapy Association (@homehealthAPTA). The September chat will focus on home health and physical therapy. If you are interested in co-hosting an upcoming Twitter chat with the Alliance, please contact Jen Schiller at jschiller@ahhqi.org.
The August #HomeHealthChat was co-hosted by the Long-Term Quality Alliance (@LTQA).
The Long-Term Quality Alliance is a community of organizations aimed at improving outcomes and quality of life for persons and their families who are managing functional limitations due to chronic health conditions.
 
Read more here.
Home-Based Medical Care Is Concentrated Away From Most Homebound Patients
American Journal of Managed Care, 9/17/16
“About 4 million patients need home-based medical care because they are frail, functionally limited, and home bound. Simply put, they are not healthy enough to step out of their houses for medical attention. New research finds out just how much are the home-based medical care providers geographically concentrated or spread out.”
To read more, click here.
 
What Top Population Health Trends Mean for Home Health
Home Health Care News, 9/13/16
“Population health is an eye-catching phrase with a vast opportunity for the home health care industry, as providers from all settings are encouraged to work together improve outcomes for their patients. Forward-thinking home health providers are engaged in population health, and identifying emerging trends can help providers stay ahead of the curve.”
To read more, click here.
 
CMS says 49 states have reduced avoidable hospital readmissions
Modern Healthcare, 9/13/16
“Every state in the U.S. but Vermont has reduced its avoidable hospital readmission rates since 2010, new data released Tuesday by the CMS show. These improvements follow the implementation of various CMS programs and initiatives to improve the quality of care, chief among them the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program.”
To read more, click here.
For the latest home health research, fact sheets, and value materials, visit www.ahhqi.org.
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