The final report from the Alliance for Home Health Quality and Innovation (AHHQI)’s Future of Home Health Project was published online this month in the peer-reviewed journal Home Health Care Management and Practice. The article, “The Future of Home Health Care: A Strategic Framework for Optimizing Value,” outlines a plan for home health and home-based care and recommends a framework for the Medicare-certified home health agency of the future.
The authors state that home health agencies will play critical roles in:
- providing both post-acute care and acute care at home
- partnering with primary care
- partnering with home and community-based long-term care programs
The authors interviewed stakeholders and reviewed literature to seek out recommendations to help enable future home health agencies to recognize their full potential. The authors state that CMS should:
- Reduce regulatory barriers to risk-sharing and empower home health agencies to be a full partner in care coordination, such as accountable care organizations (ACO).
- Allow more flexibility in delivering home health care through alternative payment models. This includes testing waivers of certain regulatory limits to encourage clinically appropriate and cost-effective practices.
- Crack down on home health care fraud by identifying “hot spot” areas of abnormal claim patterns. Tackling fraud in this targeted fashion will enable greater confidence in the Medicare system and cut down on wasted effort.