3 04, 2015

Hospice Prognosis vs Diagnosis – Can we slow down for a minute please?

By | April 3rd, 2015|17 Comments

I had not been paying much attention to NHPCO's flurry of activity during March regarding prognosis vs. diagnosis until I received an email from a well-respected hospice CEO that said, in part: 

"Our Medical Director is livid and is adamant that what 'influences' the prognosis is very different from what is "related to" the prognosis.  This seems like a fundamental shift from what we have been doing for thirty years - is it possible that everyone (including NHPCO) has been so wrong about this? We think we have financial challenges now - just wait!"

3 09, 2014

What’s New with Part D? Tools to Guide Your Relatedness Journey

By | September 3rd, 2014|Comments Off on What’s New with Part D? Tools to Guide Your Relatedness Journey

Since our last Part D blog, CMS issued the Revised Guidance for Part D, on July 18th, 2014, effective as of that date. There are some detailed, comprehensive resources (listed below) that address this complex issue. The purpose of this blog is to synthesize and recap “what’s new” in the Revised Guidance for Part D and highlight tools for navigating these changes.

3 07, 2014

Ode to Part D and the Hospice Physician

By | July 3rd, 2014|Comments Off on Ode to Part D and the Hospice Physician

May I be the first to acknowledge that I am certainly not a poet!  Let me also be clear that this is written with the utmost of respect for the sacred responsibility that we elect in accepting the privilege of caring for those at the end of their lives.  However, in the stressful times in which we are living, with increasing regulatory and public scrutiny, burdensome processes (e.g., The Hospice Item Set, CR 8358, etc.), and unclear guidance (e.g., Medicare Part D), my hope is that a small dose of humor might help in palliating some of the symptoms of confusion, frustration and disempowerment.  And so yes, this blog post is ‘related’!

28 02, 2014

A Timely Reminder About Part D

By | February 28th, 2014|2 Comments

As of March 1, 2014, Medicare Part D providers will no longer pay for medications that are (or may be reasonably assumed to be) related to a patient’s primary hospice diagnosis and the comorbid conditions that are contributing to his or her terminal status. Rather, hospice providers will be responsible for covering all of the medications that are needed to manage and/or palliate end-of-life symptoms appropriately and effectively.