CMS' proposed home health payment rule for 2021: 3 things to know

CMS has released its proposed Home Health Prospective Payment System rule for 2021, which would boost Medicare home health reimbursement. 

Three takeaways from the proposed rule

1. Payment update. Under the proposed rule, net home health payments would increase by 2.6 percent, or $540 million, in 2021. 

2. Telehealth. The proposed rule would make certain telehealth changes introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic permanent. CMS proposed allowing home health providers to continue to use telehealth in providing care to Medicare beneficiaries after the public health emergency, but the department said telehealth may not substitute for an in-person home visit that is ordered on a plan of care. "These proposals would ensure patient access to the latest technology and give home health agencies predictability that they can continue to use telecommunications technology as part of patient care beyond the PHE," CMS said in a fact sheet for the proposed rule. 

3. Home infusion therapy. The proposed rule would create new Medicare enrollment policies for home infusion therapy suppliers and update the home infusion therapy services payments rates using the 2021 Physician Fee Schedule amounts. 

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