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12/11/2011

The Pulse: December 12, 2011

In this issue:

Features

Hospice Payment Included in Nursing Facility Quality Bill

Last Tuesday, Director of Public Policy Katie Rogers testified before the Ohio Senate Finance Committee on behalf of LeadingAge Ohio on Senate Bill 264, introduced on Nov. 28 to establish Medicaid nursing facility quality payments beginning July 2012. The bill, sponsored by Senator Shannon Jones (R-Springboro), spells out the twenty quality measures, of which nursing facilities must meet five (5) in order to receive the full quality payment of $16.44. (Read more...)

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Unified Long Term Care Services Advisory Workgroup – Update

"The best way to predict the future is to create it.”  Peter Drucker.

The ULTCS AWG is central to the changing State Medicaid landscape for all providers.  This month the PULSE will discuss this activity in more detail due to its prominence in the coming changes.  The workgroup met the last week of November to recap current activities and lay out next steps.  It was interesting to read a recent review of the meeting from a non-state associated home care agency this week regarding “what’s going on.”  Whether or not you’ve been involved during the last four years and not kept up with the work of this and/or many other associations, this reviewer’s first statement hits the mark head on… “As it stands now, these are not possible changes, these are real changes.”  (Read more...)

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MCA Continuing Work on MOLST Legislation

Midwest Care Alliance continues to meet with other provider groups, interested parties, and legislators and to draft and introduce a bill that will replace Ohio’s current DNR law with Medical Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (MOLST). The creation of a uniform MOLST form is based on effective communication of patient wishes, documentation of medical orders, and a promise by health care professionals to honor these wishes. (Read more...)

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2011 Election Recap

As expected, Ohio voters came out to the polls in droves on November 8, as voter turnout was the highest in more than 70 years for an “off-year” general election – 46 percent, with over 3.5 million ballots cast. Many voters were motivated by the contentious state ballot issue battle over Senate Bill 5, Ohio’s collective bargaining bill enacted earlier this session. (Read more...)

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current state legislation

This article contains information about current legislation relevant to home, hospice and palliative care. (Read more...)

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STATEHOUSE NEWS

Click on the links below for information surrounding the Economy,  2012 Elections, General Assembly, Health & Human Services and other topics.

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FEDERAL ISSUES

U.S. Rep. Rob Portman (R-OH) vowed to press ahead with corporate tax reform Monday despite the failure of the deficit reduction "Super Committee," promising federal legislation to lower the business tax rate from 35 percent to 25 percent by eliminating loopholes. Portman, one of 12 members of the Super Committee, announced the proposal to the conservative American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He said the plan will be "pro-growth, deficit-neutral" and move to a "territorial system" for corporate taxation.

DOL looking to modify companionship services exemption

The U.S. Department of Labor as well as some members of Congress are looking to modify or eliminate the longstanding definition and application of the companionship services exemption. It is anticipated that changes to the companionship services exemption would reduce the availability of care to the elderly and the infirm and increase the costs of service delivery with no corresponding increase from third party payers, such as Medicaid.  For private pay home care, the cost of overtime compensation would need to be passed on to the consumer or absorbed by the home care company. (Read more...)

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HOSPICE HELP Act S 722 / HR 3506

Exciting news!  Representative Tom Reed of 29th district of New York State has introduced H.R. 3506- the House version of the HELP Hospice Act! Rep. Reed had several very positive interactions with one of our great programs- Southern Tier Hospice & Palliative Care in Corning, NY. Through great grassroots advocacy, they were able to build a relationship with Rep. Reed that ultimately led to him championing the hospice cause. Be on the lookout for a series of posts on the HAN Blog detailing the grassroots activity that led to the introduction of the HELP Hospice Act- it’s an inspiring story that speaks to the passion of the entire hospice community! (Read more...)

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