CMS Finalizes Contract Regulations for Long-Term Care Providers and Hospice Partners
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
by: VNAA Policy Team

Section: Public Policy and Advocacy




According to the finalized rule released on June 27 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) long-term care providers will now be required to develop a strictly formatted contract with their hospice care partners. The regulation clarifies the details of each contract and will take effect August 26.

CMS regulations now state that when establishing an agreement with a hospice provider, LTC facilities must be sure to address issues such as:
  • The services the hospice will provide
  • The hospice's responsibilities for determining the appropriate hospice care plan
  • The services the LTC facility will continue to provide based on each resident's care plan
  • A communication process, including how the communication will be documented between the LTC facility and the hospice provider, to ensure that the needs of the resident are addressed and met 24 hours per day
Providers also must have an interdisciplinary contact person with a clinical background within the facility, who will handle coordination of hospice patient care. The final rule adds language to that the LTC must have an interdisciplinary contact person in the facility, who will handle coordination of hospice patient care. This person must have: 1) a clinical background; 2) function within their state scope of practice act; and 3) have the ability to assess the resident or have access to someone that can assess the resident.

The rule also clarifies that if a facility chooses not to arrange for the provision of hospice services at the facility through an agreement with a Medicare-certified hospice, it must assist the resident in transferring to a facility that will arrange for the provision of hospice services when a resident requests a transfer.

CMS estimates this ruling will cost $437 per facility initially and $232 thereafter. 

To read the complete rule in the Federal Register, click here.
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