Now that you've had time to recover from the first hectic months of the new year, it's time to focus on what the remainder of the year will bring for case management and some of the biggest challenges that may lie ahead in 2016.
Discharge planning Conditions of Participation changes.Ronald Hirsch, MD, FACP, CHCQM,vice president of the Regulations and Education Group at Accretive Health in Chicago, called CMS' proposed changes to the discharge planning Conditions of Participation (CoPs), which would revamp the discharge planning process, "the bombshell for 2016."
BFFC-QIO audits. In October 2015, Quality Improvement Organizations (QIO) took over the role of education and enforcement for the 2-midnight rule from the Recovery Audit Contractors. In 2016, these Beneficiary and Family Centered Care QIO (BFCC-QIO) audits of short stays will be in full force, says Hirsch.
The new Comprehensive APC for observation patients. CMS approved a new comprehensive APC (C-APC) payment for observation patients for 2016, which provides payment for nonsurgical services provided to patients with an eight-hour or longer observation stay. Any ED-visit level code will qualify for the comprehensive APC code. "The new Comprehensive APC for observation patients means that hospitals need to be more efficient and avoid incidental testing which will no longer be paid," says Hirsch.
The American Hospital Association asked CMS to clarify some aspects of its new outpatient notification requirement, Notice of Observation Treatment and Implication for Care Eligibility Act, which is supposed to go into effect in the summer of 2016.
Is your hospital in one of the 67 geographic areas defined by CMS as a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and one that CMS has identified to participate in the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) Model? If so, is your case management department ready? Does your department have the processes and procedures in place for how it will participate in this retrospective bundled payment innovative project for Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries?