More hospice info wanted

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Federal regulators have added another layer of bureaucracy for hospice providers operating within skilled nursing facilities.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently released new requirements for these hospice workers, mandating they submit more detailed claims data to regulators, starting in 2014.

Federal officials say, under a provision of the Affordable Care Act, the additional data gathering could lead to revised reimbursement levels.

Hospice providers may begin submitting this information with their claims starting Jan. 1, 2014. Required reporting of the information will begin April 1, 2014.

Nurses, aides, social workers, physical and occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists are all expected to report line-item visit data for general inpatient care they provide to Medicare hospice patients in skilled nursing facilities or hospitals, according to CMS.

A Medicaid Learning Network document summarizes coding for the new claims reporting. There are codes for general inpatient care, post-mortem visits, injectable drugs, non-injectable prescriptions and infusion pumps. 

The CMS transmittal on the subject can be found at in the downloads section.