Home Health, Hospice

Reminder: Updated hospice payment rates, wage index to take effect Oct. 1

Payment rates for hospice care, the hospice cap amount, and the hospice wage index updates finalized in the 2020 hospice payment rule will take effect Oct. 1, and CMS has released a transmittal and MLN matters article on the changes.

CMS finalized rate increases for continuous home care, general inpatient care and inpatient respite care. In 2020, hospices will be paid $1,395.63 for continuous home care, $450.10 for inpatient respite care and $1,021.25 for general inpatient care. By comparison, in 2019, hospices are paid $998.38 for continuous home care, $176.01 for inpatient respite care pays and $758.07 for general inpatient care.

But for hospices that submit quality data and provide routine home care, the payment rate for days one through 60 will be $194.50 in 2020, compared to $196.25 in 2019. For days 61 and beyond, payments will decrease to $153.72 in 2020, compared to $154.21 in 2019.

The hospice cap amount for the 2020 cap year is $29,964.78.

The revised payment rates and wage index will be incorporated in the Hospice Pricer and sent to MACs. While the wage index is not published in the Federal Register, it can be found at https://go.cms.gov/2zoeEJs.

Related link: View the transmittal at https://go.cms.gov/2NuJOat. View the MLN Matters article at https://go.cms.gov/2Lem5Zc.