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CMS Ends Emergency Blanket Waivers for Nursing Home Staffing, Attempts to Reduce Clinician Burden and More...


Posted on: 6/30/2020

CMS Ends Emergency Blanket Waiver for the Nursing Home Staffing Data Submission Requirement

On June 25, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced plans to end the emergency blanket waiver requiring all nursing homes to resume submitting staffing data through the Payroll-Based Journal system by August 14, 2020. The waiver was intended to temporarily allow the agency to focus efforts during COVID-19 and reduce the administrative burden on nursing homes. The released memorandum also includes updates related to staffing and quality measures

Read the memorandum>>>

Read the press release>>>

CMS Proposes Calendar Year 2021 Payment and Policy Changes for Home Health Agencies

On June 25, CMS issues a proposed rule [CMS-1730-P] that proposes routine updates to the home health payment rates for calendar year (CY) 2021, in accordance with existing statutory and regulatory requirements. This proposed rule also includes a proposal to make permanent the regulatory changes related to telecommunications technologies in providing care under the Medicare home health benefit beyond the expiration of the public health emergency (PHE) for the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

This rule includes a proposal to adopt the revised Office of Management and Budget (OMB) statistical area delineations as described in OMB Bulletin 18-04 and proposes to apply a 5 percent cap on wage index decreases in CY 2021. Finally, this rule proposes Medicare enrollment policies for qualified home infusion therapy suppliers and updates the home infusion therapy services payment rates for CY 2021.

In an effort to promote efficiencies, this rule proposes to permanently finalize, beginning January 1, 2021, the amendment to the home health regulations outlined in the March 30, 2020 Policy and Regulatory Revisions in Response to the COVID–19 Public Health Emergency Interim Final Rule (85 FR 19230). This would mean that home health agencies (HHAs) can continue to utilize telecommunications technologies in providing care to beneficiaries under the Medicare home health benefit beyond the COVID-19 PHE, as long as the telecommunications technology is related to the skilled services being furnished, is outlined on the plan of care, and is tied to a specific goal indicating how such use would facilitate treatment outcomes.

Read the proposed rule>>>

New CMS Office of Burden Reduction and Health Information Aims to Reduce Regulatory and Administrative Burden

On June 23, CMS announced the creation of the Office of Burden Reduction and Health Informatics to unify the agency’s efforts to reduce regulatory and administrative burden and to further the goal of putting patients first. The new office is an outgrowth of the agency’s Patients over Paperwork (PoP) Initiative, which is the cornerstone of CMS’s ongoing efforts to implement President Trump’s 2017 executive order to “Cut the Red Tape” and eliminate duplicative, unnecessary, and excessively costly requirements and regulations. This announcement permanently embeds a culture of burden reduction across all platforms of CMS agency operations.

Additionally, the Office of Burden Reduction and Health Informatics will focus on the important work of health informatics, which uses and applies health data and clinical information to provide better healthcare to patients. Fostering innovation through interoperability will be an important priority, and the office will leverage technology and automation to create new tools that allow patients to own and carry their personal health data with them seamlessly, privately, and securely throughout the health care system.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and our ACMA advocacy firm Lobbyit contributed to this information.

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Announcements

ACMA National Office Has Moved

The home address of the ACMA National Office has changed. Our new physical address is 40 Rahling Circle, Little Rock, AR 72223. All phone and email contact information remain the same. Read the announcement >>>

ACMA COVID-19 Resource Center

ACMA is committed to keeping you informed about our actions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Stay up to date via the ACMA COVID-19 Resource Center where you will find helpful information, members-only resources and guidance for case management and transitions of care specific to this evolving situation. We encourage you to visit the resource center and to lean on ACMA as your trusted source during this time of uncertainty. Thank you for your work in your communities and for all you are doing to address this pandemic. Access ACMA COVID-19 Resource Center >>>

FREE! Collaborative Case Management: Special COVID-19 Issue

ACMA has launched a new special issue of "Collaborative Case Management," a peer-reviewed journal exclusively for members. Inside, industry partners from across the country share their insights into battling the COVID-19 pandemic. Experts provide you with tools, resources, ideas and experiences covering all aspects of the continuum of care. Not a member of ACMA? We've still got you covered. This special issue is free to download to provide you a sampling of all that ACMA membership has to offer. Read it Today! >>>

Watch Sessions & Earn Continuing Education Credits

Get your CEs by participating in the 2020 ACMA Virtual National Conference to meet your license or ACM, CMAC and CCM renewal needs. Up to 28.8 contact hours are available for RNs and SWs. ACM, CMAC and CCMs earn up to 24.0 recertification credits. AMA PRA Category 1 Credits also available. Preview Sessions >>> | Register Here >>>

New ACMA Podcast - "Care Transitions Today" Launches Oct. 6

ACMA has just launched a new podcast dedicated to case management and transitions of care professionals. Care Transitions Today brings together thought leaders from around the country for frank, meaningful conversations about contemporary issues facing case managers. New episodes are up and running on all your regular podcast platforms. Learn more about Care Transitions Today.>>>

Compass Mid-Year Course Release

Compass has just released a new course, Case Management Emergency Preparedness, which was developed to support and train case management staff and leadership on essential aspects of emergency preparedness, including lessons-learned with COVID-19 case studies. Current compass users can simply log-in to your dashboard to access the new course. If you're not a Compass subscriber, learn more about the product.>>>

Validate Your Expertise Through Professional Certification

The Accredited Case Manager (ACM) Certification is for health care delivery system case management professionals and tests core case management knowledge that is shared by nurse and social work case managers. Case Management Administrator Certification (CMAC) validates the competency of case management administrators, managers and aspiring leaders and promotes professional practice standards. If you are not yet certified, we encourage you to apply and enhance your professional practice by putting a credential after your name. The application deadline is November 15 in order to test in January-March 2021. ACM >>> CMAC >>>

American Case Management Association
40 Rahling Circle
Little Rock, Arkansas 72223
Phone: 501-907-ACMA (2262)
Fax: 501-227-4247