This Minute covers a review of the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing (HHVBP) Model – Fourth Annual Report.

Hello, everyone, welcome to our Monday Minute. Today I want to quickly review some of the key components of the Value-Based Purchasing annual report that was released just recently. There is the possibility that the Home Health Value Based Purchasing model will go through a nationwide expansion as early as 2022. In order for that to occur, it must go through the rulemaking process, which has us believing that the information regarding a nationwide expansion of VBP will be released in The Proposed Home Health Rule for 2022. That is expected in July, to be finalized in late October, early November, for implementation in January. These next couple of screens share some of the recaps of the findings from the 2019 annual report, keeping in mind that 2019 was the fourth year of the Value Based Purchasing model that took place in the states that you see listed on the screen. These are some of the key findings from that report.  Evaluation of the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing (HHVBP) Model – Fourth Annual Report is 163 pages, so a very detailed report. I thought extremely interesting that $604 million have been attributed to reductions and cumulative Medicare spending as a result of the Value-Based Purchasing model, but the majority of that is related to a reduction in inpatient hospitalization stays and a reduction in skilled nursing facility services spending, not a direct impact or a direct hit to spending on Home Health. In the aggregate for the Home Health agencies in the states participating, there was basically no change in overall reimbursement. There appears to be in those states a reduction in rehospitalizations and skilled nursing facility stays, resulting in the million dollars of savings in those areas.

Whether it’s an actual savings in Home Health funds or not, if the overall Medicare program is going to benefit from there being a Home Health Value-Based Purchasing model, then you can probably understand why they are considering implementing a nationwide expansion. In the quality and utilization portion of the report, it does show that the performance scores were 8% higher among Home Health agencies in VBP states versus non VBP states in the 2019 year. There was a decrease in unplanned hospitalizations as we’ve already said and in skilled nursing facility use by beneficiaries using Home Health. A continued trend toward improvement in functional status, including two new composite measures that have assisted in that. There is one more year to report on which is 2020. We anticipate that report will only include the second half of 2020 because of the fact that the individual or the additional extra reporting that the agency had to do in the VBP portal was suspended for the first two quarters of 2020 due to the Public Health Emergency. As stated earlier, we do anticipate that any instruction regarding a nationwide rollout of VBP will be in The Proposed Rule coming out in July. Again, going through a comment period and the rulemaking process finalized in October-November for implementation in 2022. If that is what they intend to do, more details of course to come and again a 163 page report to be reviewed, if you so desire.

I want to thank you all on for participating today. Thank you for being out there on the front lines and taking care of patients. I hope you had an amazing holiday weekend, as we celebrated the memory of those who have given their lives so that we may be free in this country. Please make sure to continue to pay attention to your State and National Home Care Associations, as there will be additional information regarding VBP. There is a session on the nationwide rollout of VBP at the Financial Managers Conference, August 1-3 in Chicago. Go to the National Association website to register for that conference. I definitely hope to see you there. Have a great day and a great week. REGISTER HERE.

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