Home Health: Rebasing 101

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires Medicare to reset (rebase) the home health services episode payment rate.  Once rebasing is implemented, rebasing will severely impact home health reimbursement over the next four years.  The new changes will also affect home health quality reporting requirements.  Essentially, CMS is proposing a 3.5% reduction per year for the next four years.

CMS will not be changing therapy payments because adjusting home health PPS factors therapy into the case mix is a complex process that requires more comprehensive analysis and structural changes to the home health PPS system.

With rebasing, CMS predicts that, on average, agencies will see a 1.5% cut in reimbursement this year and an overall reduction in home health payments of $650 million. After updates, the net effect will be a $290 million reduction in payments.  Home health agencies also face the likelihood that it will be at least four years until payment rates rise again.

Below is a list of resources to help you better understand rebasing:

  1. NAHC Whitepaper 
  2. Hall Render Killian Health
  3. Healthcare Association of HI
  4. Visiting Nurse Associations of America