Medicare plans home health P4P program

CMS has begun looking for home health agencies to participate in a new pay-for-performance program which will look at whether the agencies can simultaneously improve care and cut costs for Medicare. To monitor performance, the program will use seven quality measures taken from the agency's Outcome-Based Quality Improvement data set. (Since the agencies already submit such data, they won't need to do any additional reporting.)

CMS is looking at acute care hospitalization and emergency care rates, plus improvements in bathing, ambulation/locomotion and transferring, as well as the status of surgical wounds and management of oral meds. When Medicare ran a similar pilot with 10 group practices, only two got incentive payments, but the process of care is certainly different here. Let's see what happens this time.

To learn more about the proejct:
- read this Health Data Management item

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