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2018 Bipartisan Budget Act Impact on Home Health Providers

Friday, February 9, President Donald Trump signed, the Bipartisan Budget Act into law just hours after it was approved by lawmakers. The law contains multiple health care provisions.

Most notable for home health providers is the provision of the law that moves episodes of care from the current 60-day model to a 30-day episode. Implementation is expected in 2020 at the earliest.

The 2020 home health market basket update is also now set at 1.5% in 2020. This is approximately 1% less than projected under the current benefit.  This adjustment is estimated to reduce home health payment $3.5 billion over 10 years.

Finally, the rural home health add-on of 3% per episodic payment based on where the patient lives, has been extended for another 5 years. The sunset date of January 1, 2018 will be adjusted and the add-on retrospective.  Watch for a CMS update on the implementation, and instructions on how the MACs will manage the change.

Watch for more information on the Chronic Care Act which was also passed as part of the budget.