CMS gives itself one-year extension to publish a new discharge planning rule

From Home Health Line.
CMS has just given itself an additional year — until Nov. 3, 2019 — to finalize its proposed rule involving discharge planning.
CMS first proposed discharge planning changes in October 2015. But now it says it can’t meet its three-year deadline to finalize that proposal.
Due to public comments received and stakeholder feedback, CMS determined “there are significant policy issues that need to be resolved” and there is a need to coordinate with another …

PPS final rule increases agencies’ payments for 2019, finalizes PDGM

CMS has finalized a plan to launch a budget-neutral payment model for home health that utilizes 30-day payment periods and stops using the number of therapy visits to determine payment. That’s according to the 2019 PPS final rule posted Oct. 31 on the Federal Register website.
The Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) will launch “on or after” Jan. 1, 2020, according to the final rule. That language differs from the proposed rule, when CMS indicated PDGM would …

CMS releases 2019 Medicare Parts A&B premiums and deductibles

From The Bottom Line.
On October 12, 2018, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the 2019 premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance amounts for the Medicare Part A and Part B programs.
Medicare Part B Premiums/Deductibles
Medicare Part B covers physician services, outpatient hospital services, certain home health services, durable medical equipment, and certain other medical and health services not covered by Medicare Part A.
The standard monthly premium for Medicare Part B enrollees will be $135.50 for …

JAMA addresses issues with elder abuse screening

In editorials in this week’s issue of JAMA, authors discussed the need for more research in developing better screening tools for discovering instances of elder abuse.
The authors were responding to a statement issued Tuesday by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) that it “found no evidence about whether screening can successfully identify elderly or vulnerable adults who are being abused,” nor did it find evidence that screening can prevent elder abuse.
The editorial argues that …