ElevatingHOME Strongly Opposes Legislation Introduced to Implement HHGM in 2020

In an effort to legislate the recent Home Health Groupings Model (HHGM) proposal by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD) introduced, without input from the home health industry, the Rural Home Health Extension and Regulatory Relief Act (H.R. 3992). The bill extends the add-on for Medicare rural home health services for five years, but it also cuts $4 billion from Medicare home health providers.

ElevatingHOME strongly opposes H.R. 3992. While it extends the rural add-on, it does so at the detriment of rural providers. The five-year extension is not enough to offset the close to $4 billion cut the industry will see under the untested HHGM, which will disproportionally affect rural providers.

H.R. 3992 simply pushes the implementation of HHGM from January 1, 2019 to January 1, 2020 and uses the same, untested formula found in the proposed HHS rule. Additionally, the legislation would implement a 3.7 percent cut to home health services over four years. The extension of the rural add-on is simply not enough to cover the devastation rural home health providers will experience under HHGM.

The legislation also ignores the larger concern that HHGM is being implemented without collaboration from the home health industry or testing in any way.

Contact your Member of Congress today and tell them to oppose H.R. 3992, the Rural Home Health Extension and Regulatory Relief Act.

The bill is expected to be marked up by the House Ways and Means Committee next week and attached to legislation funding the Children’s Health Insurance Program and extending expiring Medicare programs. If the bill passes out of Committee, it is expected to receive a floor vote the week of October 23.

Please contact Joy Cameron, ElevatingHOME’s Vice President of Policy and Innovation, with any questions.

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