CMS Clarifies its Definition of ‘Homebound’

CMS has clarified the definition of “homebound,” stating that any person “shall be considered ‘confined to the home’ (homebound) if the following two criteria are met:”

  1. The patient needs the aid of supportive devices such as crutches, canes, wheelchairs, walkers, the use of special transportation or the assistance of another person to leave their residence because of illness or injury.  Or, the person has a condition “such that leaving his or her home is medically contraindictated.” The patient must meet one of the previous requirements AND two additional requirements defined below.
  2. The patient is unable to leave their home AND that leaving their home requires a considerable effort.

“The Change Request 8444 also provides examples of temporary absences from the home-and in need of assistance-and how the patient would still be considered homebound.”  These new instructions are intended to prevent confusion and provide a clearer guide.

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