Bulletin: March 24th, 2020

March 24th, 2020



HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: Cost Report Filing Extensions, Palmetto GBA, March 23, 2020
HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: COVID-19 Summary for Home Health and Hospice, NAHC List Serve, March 20, 2020 NAHC has created a summary relevant information impacting home health agencies and hospices related to the COVID19 pandemic.  The information is broken down into three categories: Patients, Home Health and Hospice Staff, and Regulatory and Operations. 
HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: Interim Guidance on Extensions for AHA Instructor & Provider CPR Cards during COVID-19 Outbreak, Forum of States List Serve, March 20, 2020 With precautionary measures being taken globally to control the spread of COVID-19, and many countries and regions delaying training, the AHA has received questions from our Training Network about extensions, or “grace periods” for expirations of AHA Instructor and Provider Course Completion Cards. 
HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: CMS COVID-19 Call Covers Waivers, Q&A, NAHC Report, March 20, 2020On Friday, March 20, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) held a call with home health organizations to discuss recent developments related to the novel coronavirus COVID-19.  Even though the call was specific to home health agencies there hospice questions addressed, as well.
HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: President Signs Coronavirus Response Act with Emergency Paid Sick Leave, NAHC Report, March 20, 2020 – Exemptions for Health Care Providers Require Revision to Cover Some Home Care, Hospice Personnel – On Wednesday, March 18, President Donald J. Trump signed into law (H.R. 6021 (P.L. 116-127), The Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which expands access to Emergency Paid Sick Leave to as many as 87 million U.S. workers, and provides families with Emergency Paid Family Leave to address widespread and potentially prolonged school closures due to Coronavirus.
HOME HEALTH: Medicare FFS Response to COVID-19, Revised,  CMS, March 20, 2020 - The HHS Secretary declared a public health emergency, which allows for CMS programmatic waivers based on Section 1135 of the Social Security Act. An MLN Matters Special Edition Article SE20011 on Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) Response to the Public Health Emergency on the Coronavirus was revised on March 20, 2020.  
HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: Governor DeWine’s COVID-19 Update | March 21, 2020
HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: Governor DeWine’s COVID-19 Update | March 22, 2020

>>>RCD & PDGM Needs–                                                                                                          

OPERATION: tackle is OCHCH’s campaign that supports your agency’s PDGM & RCD needs.
DON’T MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY!! Please mark your calendars for EVERY FRIDAY @ 10am. The calls will last no more than an hour.
The first part of the call will address PDGM.
The last part of the call will be spent on RCD updates and Q&As.
**ATTENTION: For the OCHCH WEEKLY PDGM/RCD CALL we have set up a NEW way to Call-in through ZOOM!!!
This weeks call-in Informtation:
Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device
Meeting ID:
Or join by phone:
If you have trouble getting on the Call – PLEASE CALL OCHCH 1-614-885-0434 Ext.206, or e-mail ryan@ochch.org

>>>RCD UPDATES –                                                                                                                  

eRCD is Now Active - eRCD is a new feature on the Provider Dashboard within eServices that provides you with the ability to monitor your Review Choice Demonstration (RCD) results. You will enjoy features such as your RCD affirmation or claim approval rate, and current Additional Documentation Request (ADR) and Pre-Claim Review (PCR) decisions.


eServices: Inbox Filtering Feature Refines Review Choice Demonstration (RCD) for Home Health Services Search

Pre-Claim Review (PCR) and Low Utilization Payment Adjustments (LUPAs), Palmetto GBA updated  March 1, 2020 – With the transition to the Home Health Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM), CMS will phase in the inclusion of LUPAs within the Review Choice Demonstration. Please review and share with your staff

ATTENTION: Check out the updated RCD Toolkit located in the members’ section of the OCHCH site. Just login to “My Profile” and in the left column under “HELP DESK ONLINE” click on “RCD Toolkit.”
The links to the RCD Call Recordings for the months of November, December, January, and February are available in the RCD Toolkit.
Dial 855-696-0705
Press “0” at the main menu
Press “0” again
Press “3” for HHH
Press “1” for an RCD agent 
REMINDER: All RCD provider questions must go through the Palmetto GBA Provider Contact Center (PCC) at 855-696-0705. However, if your questions are not being answered, you are not receiving a call back in a timely manner, or you need assistance to contact Palmetto GBA, PLEASE contact OCHCH by using helpdesk@ochch.org and use subject title, “RCD” and include the UTNs and provider number, OR call 614-885-0434 Ext 209.
Monthly Review Choice Demonstration (RCD) Provider Teleconference Schedule – Next date is April 1, 2020.

Unique Tracking Number (UTN) Location on the Final Claim, Palmetto GBA – This job aid instructs providers on where to enter the 14 digit alpha-numeric unique tracking number (UTN) provided in the PCR notification on the final claim for Electronic claims, Data Entry or the UB04 Claim Form. Please share with appropriate staff. 


TOOLS – MLN Matters Articles:

The Role of Therapy under the Home Health Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) - This article provides information on the continuing role of therapy under the newly implemented home health prospective payment system (HH PPS) case-mix adjustment methodology, named the Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM), for home health periods of care starting on and after January 1, 2020.

Check out the updated PDGM Toolkit located in the members’ section of the OCHCH site. Just login to “My Profile” and in the left column under “HELP DESK ONLINE” click on “PDGM Toolkit.”

If you have questions PLEASE contact OCHCH by using helpdesk@ochch.org and use subject title, “PDGM,” OR call 614-885-0434 Ext 209.
OCHCH has a number of recordings available on our website of previous PDGM education webinars for your purchase or access. Moving forward OCHCH is committed to bringing you continued education on the implementation of PDGM and its impacts on our industry.
The links to the PDGM Call Recordings for the month of December, January, and February are available in the PDGM TOOLKIT.
Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) Grouping Tool Help Document link – The purpose of the grouping tool Excel file is to help users understand how the payment grouping parameters, which are part of the PDGM, would be used to determine case-mix assignments that are part of the payment calculation under the Home Health Prospective Payment System (HH PPS).  

Payments and Payment Adjustments under the Patient-Driven Groupings Model, Palmetto GBA – This article provides information on the implementation of the new Home Health Prospective Payment System (HH PPS) case-mix adjustment methodology named the Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM). The PDGM will be implemented for home health periods of care starting on and after January 1, 2020.  This MLN Matters Number: SE19028 is a very comprehensive tool to share with staff so they develop a better understanding of the PDGM.

Our Take

By Kathy Royer, RN, BA, MBA, DMin, CHPN, CHPCA, CEHCH
RCD — Ohio Transition From Cycle 1 to Cycle 2
Ohio Home Health providers are nearing the end of the first cycle of RCD. We wanted to update you on important information for the transition from cycle 1 to cycle 2.
Ohio RCD timeline—

  • Cycle 1 ends March 31, 2020
  • Evaluation month-April 2020
  • Selection choice for cycle 2 – May 1, 2020 to May 14, 2020
  • Cycle 2 begins – June 1, 2020
For those options that are evaluated every six months (Choice 1-Preclaim review and Choice 2-Post-claim review), the claims or PCR requests reviewed during the six month period will determine the provider’s results. Providers will continue in their Cycle 1 selected option during the evaluation (April) and selection period (May).
The evaluation period occurs during month seven – for Ohio this will be the month of April. This is when you will receive your affirmation or claim approval rate results for Cycle 1. The selection period for cycle 2 will begin May 1 and end midnight May 14, 2020.  It is important to note 85% of providers choose choice 1-PCR for cycle 2. Ohio’s cycle 2 will begin June 1, 2020.


   Kathy Royer, RN, BA, MBA, DMin, CHPN, CHPCA, CEHCH

Regulatory & Policy Digest


HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: CMS Survey Priorities and Survey Suspension, NAHC, March 24, 2020 – Today CMS posted a memo outlining the suspension of some survey activities and current survey priorities. CMS is prioritizing and suspending certain federal and state survey agency (SSA) surveys, and delaying revisit surveys beginning March 20, 2020, for all certified provider and supplier types. Standard surveys for home health agencies and hospices will not be authorized during this period. Revisit survey not associated with Immediate Jeopardy (IJ) situations will also not be authorized during this period. 

HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: CMS Announces Relief for Clinicians, Providers, Hospitals and Facilities Participating in Quality Reporting Programs in Response to COVID-19, CMS List Serve, March 22, 2020--Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced it is granting exceptions from reporting requirements and extensions for Home Health and Hospice clinicians and providers participating in Medicare quality reporting programs with respect to upcoming measure reporting and data submission for those programs.  The action comes as part of the Trump Administration’s response to 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).

HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: Provider Enrollment Hotline: Temporary Provisional Medicare Billing Privileges, Palmetto GBA, March 20, 2020 – Effective immediately, Palmetto GBA has established a JJ/JM Provider Enrollment Part B Hotline at 833-820-6138, which will be available from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET. This allows physicians and nonphysician practitioners to initiate temporary provisional Medicare billing privileges via telephone and address questions regarding provider enrollment flexibilities afforded by the COVID-19 waiver. We will process your application while you are on the telephone to establish a Provider Enrollment Chain and Ownership System (PECOS) enrollment record.

HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: New Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) Get It, Use It, CMS List Serve, March 19, 2020 – CMS revised SE 18006 on March 19, 2020, to clarify that you need the beneficiary’s first name, last name, date of birth, and SSN to use MBI look-up tool. All other information remains the same.

HOME HEALTH: NOW AVAILABLE: Draft OASIS-E Instrument, CMS, March 18, 2020 – The draft OASIS-E All Items Instrument is now available in the Downloads section of the OASIS Data Sets webpage. OASIS-E will be effective January 01, 2021. Please note the instrument is not yet final. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval is required, and expected later this year.

HOSPICE: Senate Bill Would Allow Telehealth for Hospice Face-to-Face Encounters, Pause Sequestration, Hospice News, March 23, 2020 Provisions of a massive stimulus package currently being debated in the U.S. Senate would allow hospices to use telehealth in lieu of face-to-face encounters as well as temporarily ending the practice of sequestering 2% of hospice payments from the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

Upcoming Education & Events


For Upcoming webinars, conferences, workshops and events click HERE

Click image to find out more!

News Clips & Links

HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: Our First COVID-19 Patient…What Now? CHAP, March 20, 2020
HOSPICE: Hospice Providers Will Weather the COVID-19 Storm, Hospice News, March 23, 2020
HOSPICE: Hospice, Palliative Care Patients at High Risk for COVID-19, Hospice News, March 18, 2020
HOSPICE: Hospices Struggle to Access Patients in Nursing Homes Amid Pandemic, Hospice News, March 23, 2020
HOME HEALTH and HOSPICE: Dr. Deb Kegelmeyer’s Seated Exercise Video for Seniors, Dr. Deb Kegelmeyer, OSU

Ohio Council for Home Care & Hospice  1105 Schrock Rd., Suite 120, Columbus, OH 43229
(614) 885-0434   www.ochch.org