Where Home Health and Hospice Legislation Stands at the Start of 2018

Posted on Monday, January 8, 2018 2:50 PM

The 2017 Congressional calendar ended with a flurry of activity proposed and rumored legislation. The rural add-on payment modifier expired on December 31st.  This three per cent add-on applied to services provided in rural areas. “It has been in and out of existence since 2001 and dependent on legislation to continually extend its availability. The most recent extension was for two years and was included in the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) in 2015 expiring at the end of 2017. The National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC) has been working with congressional leaders to ensure its continued success. Unfortunately, a proposal emerging from the Senate aims to target and phase out the rural add-on over the next three-to-five years, depending on geographic population and profit margin statistics. Meanwhile, the House of Representatives have suggested they would prefer a simple clean extension of the add-on at current levels. Yet to be determined is which of these two options will prevail.”

In mid-December, Congress voted to extend the federal funding until January 19th. NAHC hopes to see the Medicare Extenders package and the rural add-on in the vote to continue their funding 

Source: NAHC Report 1/3/2018

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