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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) sees paying home health agencies to monitor patients remotely as a way to give doctors more time with patients while allowing home health agencies to benefit from technology innovation.
CMS on Monday unveiled a proposed rule that would make significant changes to the Home Health Prospective Payment System to better leverage remote patient monitoring technology and update the reimbursement model for home healthcare.
“The redesign of the home health payment system encourages value over volume and removes incentives to provide unnecessary care,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma said in a statement.
CMS’s proposed changes allow home health agencies to report expenses related to remote patient monitoring as allowable costs on the Medicare cost report form. The federal agency said this should foster adoption of emerging technologies by home health agencies “and result in more effective care planning, as data is shared among patients, their caregivers, and their providers.”
The proposed rule would reduce the administrative burden for physicians who order home health services for their patients, CMS said. Under the proposal, the health agency would eliminate the requirement that certifying physicians estimate how much longer skilled services would be needed when recertifying the need for continuing home health care, as this information already is included in a patient’s plan of care.