Pasted January 18, 2023
On Thursday, January 12, 2023, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) formally voted to approve payment recommendations for hospice and home health that will be included in their 2023 Report to Congress. Following are the recommendations and their financial implications for the relevant Medicare benefits:
Recommendation: For fiscal year 2024, the Congress should update the 2023 Medicare base payment rates for hospice by the amount specified in current law and wage adjust and reduce the hospice aggregate cap by 20 percent.
Implications: Decrease in Medicare spending relative to current law of $250 million to $750 million over 1 year and between $5 billion to $10 billion over 5 years. With the changes, MedPAC expects beneficiaries to continue to have good access to hospice care and continued provider willingness and ability to care for Medicare beneficiaries.
Recommendation: For calendar year 2024, the Congress should reduce the 2023 Medicare base payment rate for home health agencies by 7 percent.
Implications: Relative to current law this change would decrease spending by $750 million to $2 billion over one year and over $10 billion over 5 years. With the changes, MedPAC expects that access to care should remain adequate, and should not affect the willingness of providers to serve beneficiaries, although it may increase cost pressure for some providers.
During the MedPAC December meeting the Commission engaged in broader discussion related to the recommendations.
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