NAHC President Bill Dombi: Hospices in for a ‘Bumpy Ride to New Era’

The Medicare Hospice Benefit is ripe for change nearly four decades after its establishment, but moving the needle will include a heavy lift around evolving regulations. This is according to Bill Dombi, president of the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC). The hospice industry is undergoing tremendous changes amid rising demand and increased […]

[UPDATED] Rep. Earl Blumenauer Plans Landmark Hospice Reform Bill

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon) is drafting a landmark bill that, if enacted, would represent the most significant reforms to date for hospice payment and oversight. Blumenauer announced the bill, the Hospice Care Accountability, Reform, and Enforcement (Hospice CARE) Act, on Thursday at the Hospice News Elevate conference in Washington D.C. Though the bill language is […]

Fraudulent Hospice Providers May Be Moving Between States

Fraudulent hospices continue to proliferate, and some may be moving between states to escape regulators. Beginning in 2021, numerous reports emerged of unethical or illegal practices among hundreds of newly licensed hospices, particularly among new companies popping up in California, Texas, Nevada and Arizona. Thus far, California is the only state to take action on […]

Hospice Groups, AOs Speak Out on Proposed Accreditor Oversight Rule

Some accreditation organizations (AOs) have balked at the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) proposed rule designed to strengthen oversight of those institutions. CMS in February released a proposed rule that would introduce a number of provisions aimed at avoiding conflicts of interest and establishing more consistent standards, processes and definitions among accreditation […]

2025 Proposed Rule Seeks to Clarify Physician Certification of Hospice Patients

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) proposed 2025 hospice rule contains clarifications on which physicians may certify patients for hospice enrollment. According to language in the proposal, designated physician members of the hospice interdisciplinary team may certify patients for hospice if the medical director is unavailable. The clarification was intended to reconcile […]

CMS May Be Mulling Changes to the Hospice Benefit

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) 2025 proposed hospice rule contained requests for information (RFIs) that could signal changes in the agency’s thinking on key issues. Through RFIs, CMS tries to take the pulse of providers’ positions on certain questions that could impact the Medicare Hospice Benefit. In its 2025 proposal, one […]

Navigating New Requirements in the 2025 Proposed Hospice Rule

If the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) proposed 2025 hospice rule is finalized as written, hospices may encounter some hurdles implementing some of the new requirements. CMS late last month issued its proposed hospice rule for 2025. The proposal called for a 2.6% increase in hospice per diem base rates, a number […]

[UPDATED] CMS 2025 Proposed Rule Signals Changes to Quality Measurement, Omits Program Integrity Actions

The 2025 proposed hospice rule is raising some questions along with payment rates. In a proposed rule released yesterday, the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a 2.6% increase in hospice per diems for 2025. The agency also proposed two new quality measures and 2025 implementation of the Hospice Outcome and Patient […]

Congress Grills HHS on Hospice Program Integrity

Members of Congress are raising questions about the continued Medicare certification for new hospices in areas rife with fraud. U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra fielded questions in a House Ways & Means committee hearing on Capitol Hill on Wednesday. Rep. Michelle Steel (R-Calif.) and Rep. Beth Van Duyne (R-Texas) fired questions […]

Home-Based Care Employment Exceeding Pre-Pandemic Levels

Though labor shortages persist, glimmers of hope are on the horizon. Employment in the home-based care sector rose above pre-pandemic levels in 2023, according to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC). The U.S. Department of Commerce defines this sector to include hospices, home health agencies, private duty, pediatric agencies and other providers of care in […]