There is a significant need for advocacy on behalf of home health agencies nationwide. The content of the Home Health Proposed Rule was included in the July 4, 2022 Monday Minute with Melinda, and it was shocking that it was proposing a 4.2% decrease in home health agency payments. To ensure that home health agencies will not receive reduced payments, there has been some substantial efforts made on behalf of home health agencies in the House and Senate, with bills already being introduced to stop the rate reduction.
Considering various factors including inflation, the cost of patient care, and gas prices, it is unacceptable that CMS is proposing a rate reduction for providers. Bills were introduced with the help of Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Susan Collins (R-ME), and Representatives Terri Sewell (D-AL 7th District) and Vern Buchanan (R-FL 16th District). These bills were specifically written to stop rates from decreasing for home health agencies through the year 2026, meaning that the rates that are currently in place cannot be reduced, but could be increased due to inflation, increasing the market baskets, etc.
As we stated in the July 4, 2022 Monday Minute with Melinda, we need you to comment on the Proposed Rule to CMS. It is vital for you to also contact your Representatives and Senators requesting them to join onto these bills, so that they can be finalized and preserve our rates. To provide advocacy to your Representatives through the National Association for Home Care and Hospice, please click here. Your state association websites should have advocacy links as well. If you already have contacts with your House of Representatives or senators, be sure to emphasize that this legislation is imperative to the health and welfare of the home health industry.
Be sure to continue following your state and national home care and hospice associations. They will diligently support you and provide the information needed to make sure that these bills are passed so that we can continue to care for our patients without a reduction in payment rates.