Entry By: Eileen Bach, PT, M.Ed, DPT

CMS has an update on the 2011 Therapy rules – I encourage EVERY therapist working in home health care to read this document!

Go to http://www.cms.gov/center/hha.asp and look for the document titled “Chapter 7 Home Health Manual Update with Therapy Revisions” that is dated 4/18/2011. This is a rich document that discusses in detail the new, required therapy issues and identifies changed language regarding skilled therapy and maintenance therapy.

Clarified in this transmittal are several BIG issues.

First – if there is only 1 therapy service actively visiting the patient, the 13th and 19th re-assessment MUST be done on the 13th or 19th visit. Only when there are multiple therapies actively visiting is there some flexibility as long as ALL active therapists (PT, OT, ST) complete their discipline re-assessment BY the 13th visit. The rural home care agency has some exception in timing as well.

Second- the 30 day re-assessment is calendar based and the 1st day is the therapists’ assessment; each active therapist would do a 30 day re-assessment. Much more significant, CMS has clarified that the 30 day re-assessment continues across episodes until the therapy is ended.

This information along with many more items and tips to add to your skilled therapy portfolio of knowledge is covered during my seminar Home Health Care: Advancing Your Skill Set. Come and join your colleagues and I in a lively day of home care specific information and resources.

Cheers from the field!

Eileen Bach