Hospices Strategize to Assure Patients that Care Is Safe During Pandemic 

Growing patient and family concerns about safety are among the many challenges the end-of-life care community is facing during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. As hospice providers meet patient care needs during the outbreak, an added challenge is alleviating patient concerns about staff coming into the home. As the novel virus continues to spread, so do […]

Hospices Desperate for Supplies As Pandemic Takes Heavy Toll

Hospice supply lines have been strained to the limit due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as has the U.S. health care system at large. Providers of all types are reporting serious shortages of necessary materials, including essential personal protective equipment (PPE) to prevent infections, such as masks, face shields and sterile gloves.  “This is really unprecedented […]

Primary Care First Direct Contracting: Where Hospice Fits

The first application deadline for participation in the Primary Care First direct contracting payment models expired Feb. 25, but even this late in the game, many in the hospice space and other health care stakeholders struggle to understand these models. The direct contracting options include three voluntary payment models that are designed to help the […]

HomeCare Physicians, Suncrest Hospice Exemplify Care Coordination

On a cold Monday morning Thomas Cornwell, M.D., climbs into the back of an SUV. A primary care physician, he is en route to the home of an elderly dementia patient in the Chicago suburbs who recently enrolled in hospice. Cornwell and a medical assistant spend close to 40 minutes in the patient’s home, checking […]

Home-Based Primary Care May Be Hospices’ Next Frontier

As hospices seek new ways to engage patients further upstream, a rising number are diversifying their services to include home-based primary care, along with palliative care and other care models. Evidence indicates that these primary care programs carry substantial benefits for patients and families and can have a significant positive impact on a hospice’s bottom […]

CMS Primary Cares to Include New Track for High-Cost Patients

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is planning to implement a payment model within its Primary Cares Initiative that would address the needs of patients associated with the highest health care costs. Few details about the model are available as the agency has not yet publicly announced the program. The program would […]