Hospices Seek Aid As Most CARES Act Funds Go to Hospitals

While the federal government is making billions of dollars available to health care providers through the CARES Act and other programs, the lion’s share of those funds and equipment is going to hospitals, often leaving providers in other settings out in the cold, including hospice.  Hospitals nationwide unquestionably are taking a tremendous hit due to the […]

Hospices Need More from Regulators During COVID-19 Crisis

Congress and the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have offered a number regulatory flexibilities to hospice providers during the novel coronavirus pandemic through legislation and through emergency waivers. While providers and other stakeholders embrace these changes as positive and necessary steps, hospices may need additional federal support that to date they haven’t […]

CMS Waives Hospice Rules During Pandemic, Further Expands Telehealth

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has waived a number of hospice regulations, including temporarily removing the requirement that a nurse conduct a home visit at least every two weeks and expanding the allowable use of telehealth. These flexibilities for hospice are components of a larger initiative intended to reduce regulatory burden […]

Older Americans Act Reauthorized with Funds for Hospice Family Caregivers, Social Determinants

Though somewhat overshadowed by the COVID-19 crisis, Congress has reauthorized the Older Americans Act, which provides funds to services for seniors, including those designed to help them age in place. Some provisions of the act allocate dollars to community-based programs that provide meals, transportation and other social determinants of health, allowing seniors to remain in […]

[UPDATED] President Signs Stimulus Bill, Allowing Telehealth for Hospice Recertification

President Donald Trump has signed into law a $2 trillion economic stimulus bill in response to the COVID-19 national emergency. Among numerous other provisions, the massive bill will allow hospice providers to conduct face-to-face recertification visits via telehealth and suspend the practice of 2% sequestration of hospice payments by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & […]

Hospice Coalition Calls on FEMA for More PPE During Pandemic

A coalition of hospice industry groups have called on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to prioritize hospice when distributing personal protective equipment to health care organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Signatories on the letter included the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR), the Council of State Home Care & Hospice Associations, the […]

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 […]

CMS Issues Emergency Medicaid Waivers in Two States, Hospice Left Out

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued the first two state-specific 1135 waivers in Washington state and Florida. This follows a series of blanket waivers applicable to most health providers nationwide in an attempt to reduce administrative burden to allow providers to focus on their response to the coronavirus pandemic. To […]

Hospice Industry to Congress: “We Need Support”

A coalition of hospice industry groups has written to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) asking Congress to take legislative action to help hospices endure the ongoing pandemic and continue to provide care to patients and families.  The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO), the National […]