Healthcare Business Monthly
CMS: New Home Health Rules and Beneficiary Protections

A final rule effective July 13, 2017, which the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) maintains will improve home health care while streamlining providers' requirements, has been published in the Federal Register. 

Home health patients receive coordinated services ranging from skilled nursing to physical therapy to medical social services, all under the direction of their physician. CMS said there are more than 5 million Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries receiving home health care from nearly 12,600 Medicare and Medicaid-participating home health agencies, nationwide. The new rule includes a number of changes CMS proposed that it explained reflects current best practices.

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Telehealth Part B Reporting in 2017

If you are hoping the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will throw caution to the wind and spearhead the telehealth movement, think again. Based on the 2017 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) Final Rule, unless pressed by lawmakers, they are going to take their time adding to this line of coverage.

Billers Convicted in Fraud Schemes

U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland, Rod J. Rosenstein announced December 20 that Elma Myles pled guilty to defrauding Medicaid and other health benefit programs by conspiring to have durable medical equipment provider RX Resources and Solutions (RXRS) bill for supplies that were never provided or were medically unnecessary, and to overcharge for materials that were actually delivered.

2016 eCQM Reporting Deadline Extended for Hospitals

Eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals participating in the Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting (IQR) and/or Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program have been granted a little more time to submit their electronic Clinical Quality Measure (eCQM) data for the 2016 reporting period. The original deadline of Feb. 28 has been extended to March 13.

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Medical Scribes 101

The use of medical scribes has become more common in recent years, as practices and facilities search for ways to alleviate documentation tasks for providers, thereby improving their overall productivity,

Medical scribes are not medical providers (although often scribes may have some medical background), and he or she is never meant to treat a patient. Instead, the scribe’s basic task is to document in the patient medical record.

Turn Up the Volume for OIG Monthly Podcasts

If you haven't stumbled on the treasure trove of information in the Office of Inspector General's (OIG) Media section of their website, it's time you found it.

OIG now keeps you informed on fraud, enforcement, and compliance via podcast. The podcasts are found on the OIG website with Mike Kane, Office of External Affairs, discussing the monthly news and findings, recent healthcare enforcement actions and OIG reports—such as Semi-Annual Report to Congress—and even U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS)-OIG's 40th anniversary information. You can find podcasts going back as far as March 2012.

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