Hospices to receive $180 million pay bump in 2018 – ModernHealthcare.com

Hospices will get a modest 1% bump in Medicare payments in 2018—$180 million in total—under a rule the CMS finalized Tuesday.

That is down from a 2.1% increase, or $350 million, in increased payments they received in 2017.

The CMS also finalized plans to launch a Hospice Compare website sometime this month. The news comes after the CMS revealed it will automate the process for beneficiaries to elect hospice treatment.

As on the CMS’ other Compare sites, providers will be ranked from one to five stars. Metrics that the providers will be judged on include the extent to which the hospice asked patients about the severity of his/her pain and the extent to which he/she exhibits shortness of breath. The site will also measure the extent to which the hospice makes a comprehensive assessment of a patient’s treatment preferences.

The number of Medicare beneficiaries receiving hospice services has grown from 513,000 in 2000 to nearly 1.4 million in fiscal 2016. Medicare hospice expenditures have also grown, from $2.8 billion in 2000 to approximately $16.5 billion in 2016.


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