Hospice, News

Hospice payment increase of 2.7% proposed, but it’s not a straightforward change

While the hospice industry is expected to receive about $540 million in increased payments in 2020, hospice providers should curb the enthusiasm until they fully analyze how the changes will impact the business.

That’s because the payment rate for the first 60 days of routine home care (RHC) is actually decreasing slightly, according to CMS’ proposed hospice payment rule posted April 19 on the Federal Register.

“Don’t get excited when you see that increase because it’s impacting different areas now,” says Diane Link, owner of Link Healthcare Advantage in Littlestown, Pa.

If the rule is finalized as proposed, hospices would receive 2.7% more in payments.

The payment increase is based on an estimated 3.2% inpatient hospital market basket update, reduced by a 0.5% multifactor productivity adjustment.

By comparison, in 2019 hospices received a payment increase of $340 million (1.8% more than in 2018).

Source: Home Health Line