In the News

HHS Town Hall Recorded Webinar Available with Q&As

The Home Health Section's Town Hall Webinar recorded on April 30th, At Home with the Home Health Section, is now available for free. During this meeting, the Section provided an opportunity for home health based clinicians be able to openly discuss concerns, solutions and best practices learned during this challenging time. You can view the recording, along with the Q&As/comments from participants on our COVID-19 Resource page, as well as by clicking HERE for the webinar, and HERE for the Q&As/comments

 

 

President's Message

Posted: May 7, 2020

As we enter into our second month of the US national pandemic health emergency (PHE), we in home health post-acute care are beginning to see more COVID-19 patients on their path to recovery.  I am honored to be part of a profession that can rise to, and tackle, the challenges we continue to face as a nation from our unique “MacGyver-esque” approach ~ we can always find a way to access the resources and employ the strategies we need to care for our patients!  

In the last couple of weeks, I have had several communications with members of this Section (and I am sure there are many more of you doing it all “in a day’s work”) with a problem-solving, “can-do attitude” in overcoming barriers to accessing patients in congregate living settings, securing PPE, and creatively incorporating technology to provide the care needed for patients . . . all while observing social distancing and doing their part to “flatten the curve.”  Eva Norman, Rachel Botkin, Lucas Hastings, Ryan Bailey, and Roger Herr – to name a few - have stepped up to occupy this “space” where we can all find solutions to move the profession continuously forward.

A big “THANK YOU” to these, and all of you, for asking the question “why not?” while seeking creative ways to address patient needs during this period of pandemic response! 

Building on this mindset, as we continue to face adversity, we are provided a unique opportunity to explore advances in care delivery models in the home and community-based settings.  I challenge each of you to capture your stories of success in collaboration with first responders, state and local pandemic response entities, technology and PPE, and share them with your colleagues and the Home Health Section. 

Email the Section with your case studies, patient testimonials, and outcomes to new care delivery processes.  Our collective voices can do much to inform and educate policy makers in their discussions regarding future care delivery models and the payment for these services.

As always, be vigilant.  Be prepared.  Stay informed.

Sincerely,

Dee Kornetti
President
APTA Home Health Section

 

Listen Now! New Home Health Minute Podcast

Podcast Title: Treating Those Who Vitally Need Care During a Period of Social Isolation

AboutEva Norman speaks on this topic and some strategies that she used in Minnesota to help ease concerns and be able to provide vital care to those who need it.

For more information & to listen to the podcast, CLICK HERE!

 

Formal Word from CMS/MACs on NPPs Signing the Home Health Plan of Care

Section 3708 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Pub. L. No. 116-136) amended sections 1814(a) and 1835(a) of the Social Security Act to allow Nurse Practitioners (NPs), certified Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNSs), and Physician Assistants (PAs) to certify beneficiaries for eligibility under the Medicare home health benefit and oversee their plan of care. This is a permanent change that will continue after the Public Health Emergency.

Effective for claims with dates of service on or after March 1, 2020, these non-physician practitioners may bill the following codes:

  • G0179: Physician re-certification for Medicare-covered home health services under a home health plan of care (patient not present), including contacts with home health agency and review of reports of patient status required by physicians to affirm the initial implementation of the plan of care

  • G0180: Physician certification for Medicare-covered home health services under a home health plan of care (patient not present), including contacts with home health agency and review of reports of patient status required by physicians to affirm the initial implementation of the plan of care

  • G0181: Physician supervision of a patient receiving Medicare-covered services provided by a participating home health agency (patient not present) requiring complex and multidisciplinary care modalities involving regular physician development and/or revision of care plans

The descriptors of the three codes will be revised at a later date to include the non-physician practitioner specialties.

 

Updated HCPCS Codes for PTA/COTA Maintenance Visits in Home Health

Maintenance Therapy Billing Update:

The Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) is a collection of codes that represent procedures, supplies, products and services which may be provided to Medicare beneficiaries and to individuals enrolled in private health insurance programs. Recently, additional billing claim codes were added to the tabular list of HCPCS codes to define the specific provider (i.e. PT versus PTA) delivering maintenance therapy in the home health setting.

  • G2168: Services performed by a physical therapist assistant in the home health setting in the delivery of a safe and effective physical therapy maintenance program.
  • G2169: Services performed by an occupational therapy assistant in the home health setting in the delivery of a safe and effective occupational therapy maintenance program.
  • G0159 and G0160 will continue to be used by PT and OT respectively when establishing or delivering a safe and effective maintenance program.
  • G0161 will continue to be used by SLPs when establishing or delivering a safe and effective maintenance program.

Please note that these codes are NOT effective until 10/1/2020.

 
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