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Hello, everyone, and welcome to our Monday Minute.

Today I’d like to share a bit of insight into the release of the OASIS E guidance manual that just occurred in the last couple of weeks. The OASIS E implementation is set to begin January 1, 2023. We have expected for a couple of years, at least initially, that it would not be implemented until after the Public Health Emergency had officially ended. However, in 2021, they change their mind, and it will be officially implemented at the beginning of next year. The OASIS E manual released a couple of weeks ago includes a very detailed manual, 396 pages to be exact, similar to the format of the OASIS guidance manuals that we have always seen. The OASIS E manual has a Chapter 3 that gives you the details of each and every one of the OASIS items, tips and tricks about how to answer those items, and some very specific guidance as to how those items should be approached, and in assessing the patient. With those, you move through the manual to Appendix D, which is the appendix that will give you detailed descriptions of changes, including a chart to show the things that have changed from OASIS D1 to OASIS E. This includes significant changes, things such as entire sections of the OASIS being added to the OASIS document, items that are now going to be deleted that have been on OASIS D1 in the past.

We also have ones that will remain, and will be changed as far as the timing at which you will complete them. For example, in the wound section, there are multiple questions that will no longer be completed at follow up or at the point of recertification of a patient. There are numerous items that have had text changes made to them. In other words, they have either changed the language of the question, or they have changed the instruction related to the question in Chapter 3. That has happened with many items in the GG and J sections, which have just been added to OASIS D and OASIS D1 in the last few years, as a result of us moving toward having a clinical assessment document where the goal is to eventually be able to calculate outcomes across the post-acute care continuum.

Just having received this manual instruction for implementation six months from now, to one of the largest changes to OASIS documentation that has occurred since its implementation in 1999.  It is extremely important, that if you have not already decided where your agency’s education is going to come from and what the plan is to get your staff educated, you need to begin that immediately. There are state and national association education sessions happening across the nation now and will continue through the end of the year. My concern is that agencies are going to wait until October, November, or December to begin the education that is going to be needed for this implementation come January 1. This change waits for no one, and I say that to emphasize the reality that we have six months. That might seem like a long time, but it is not.

Within the content of this minute today, I will include a link to this new manual release, and I urge you strongly to search for OASIS E education sessions that have already begun to take place across the nation. The entities that provide OASIS certification exams have already given us a long list of dates. State associations have education scheduled as early as next week, and most of the annual conferences will have OASIS education. It is absolutely imperative that you come up with a plan and you come up with that plan quickly.

Please remember and keep in mind that the OASIS is not just a clinical assessment. It is going to help drive the care of the patient of course, but in addition to that, it obviously impacts your outcome calculations, your star ratings, your payment in the form of the PDGM HIPPS code, which exclusively uses the OASIS to calculate the functional portion of that PDGM calculation.

Lastly, many of these items will impact the Value Based Purchasing Nationwide Rollout that is also set to begin January 1, 2023. I really encourage you; I know that has been said multiple times already, and I hope you heed the warning – OASIS E education needs to begin and needs to begin today.

Thank you all for participating. Please let me know if you need any assistance in determining where you might obtain that education. Please click on that link within the content of this Minute and go ahead and start the preparations by getting those manuals in the hands of your education and QA teams.

Have a fabulous week and I hope to see you at a live conference this summer.