OCS Educates Hospices on Submission of Quality Measures and Public Reporting

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OCS seeks to address confusion about mandated public reporting and inform hospice providers that measures submitted to CMS in 2012 and 2013 will not be publicly reported.

As leaders in hospice empowerment for almost 20 years, OCS is releasing an official statement regarding recent announcements from the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) about the move toward standardized quality measurement and eventual public reporting for hospices.

This statement is meant to inform and educate hospice providers. In addition to this information and to help hospice organizations address any confusion, OCS is also providing a complimentary webinar recording.

In January 2012, CMS will begin to accept voluntary submission of information that CMS calls “structural measures,” which are performance measurement activities conducted during the fourth quarter of 2011. Hospices that choose to volunteer this information will provide the names and definitions of measures they are collecting, but will not provide rates or patient counts for those measures. OCS clients using QAPI Snapshot are already in position to handle this submission, as the QAPI Snapshot program already includes the measurement definition documentation requested by CMS for the structural measures submissions.

In January 2013, measure submission will become mandatory. As with the previous year’s voluntary submission, hospice organizations will submit structural measures, which include measure names and definitions, for performance metrics collected in Q4 2012 (rates and counts will be excluded). CMS also will require an additional submission in April 2013 that includes the hospice’s rate for “Pain Comfort within 24 Hours.” Hospices that choose not to submit these data in 2013 will see a 2 percent reduction in Medicare reimbursement in fiscal year 2014.

While the measures submitted by hospices voluntarily in 2012 and as a mandate in 2013 will not be publicly reported, CMS does plan to use these submissions to gain information about common measures being collected throughout the industry. The eventual public reporting of hospice data is required by the Affordable Care Act, however no specific dates have been identified.

“Hospice measures have never been standardized by CMS. While this process is new to hospice organizations, OCS has seen the evolution of standardized data in other care settings,” said Roger Herr, Strategic Advisor for OCS. “As CMS takes initial steps toward the eventual standardization of hospice measures and public reporting, it is important for hospice providers to participate in helping to shape their future course of public reporting.”

OCS has created a brief pre-recorded educational session to inform hospices and provide details on this subject. Visit the OCS QAPI Snapshot web page to view the complimentary recorded webinar.

About OCS and My InnerView
As a combined business unit of National Research Corporation, OCS and My InnerView empower clients and partners throughout the entire post-acute continuum of care, including hospice, home health, skilled nursing, assisted living, and more. The company offers market-leading survey solutions, predictive tools, data analytics, quality and outcomes reporting, financial insights, and the nation’s largest comparative databases. OCS and My InnerView partner with more than 12,000 post-acute providers.

For more information, please visit the OCS and My InnerView websites, write to info(at)ocsys.com or info(at)myinnerview.com, or call 888.325.3396 and 800.601.3884.

About National Research Corporation
National Research Corporation, headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska, is a leading provider of performance measurement, improvement services, and governance education to the healthcare industry in the United States and Canada.

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