Vulnerabilities in the Medicare Hospice Program Affect Quality Care and Program Integrity: An OIG Portfolio
(newly released OIG report)
NHPCO Responds to OIG Report
and following article
HHS Inspector General's Report Finds Flaws and Fraud In U.S. Hospice Care
Government sides with whistleblower’s effort to extract $350M from Consulate
The ongoing saga of a nine-figure False Claims Act case took another turn late last week, with the Department of Justice criticizing a federal judge who tossed out a verdict against the provider. The case involves whistleblower Angela Ruckh, a one-time employee of Consulate Health Care, who accused the company of overcharging Medicare and Medicaid by inflating therapy claims.
America Is Running Out of Family Caregivers, Just When It Needs Them Most
For generations, the nation has relied on family members to keep aging loved ones in their homes. Today, many Americans are growing older without family nearby, offering a glimpse of what the future may hold for the cohort of Americans who are approaching retirement.
How Massachusetts Med Schools Are Improving End-of-Life Instruction
… Interviewed by The Boston Herald earlier this year, Dr. Atul Gawande, surgeon, founder of the Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care and author of Being Mortal (also a Next Avenue Influencer in Aging) said his end-of-life training amounted to one hour of discussion during his first two years in medical school.
End-of-Life Care in the US Steadily Improving
The quality of care at the end of life has improved in the United States since 2000, with fewer deaths occurring in acute care hospitals and more occurring at home or in hospice, according to a new study. Fewer end-of-life patients are being transferred to hospitals for “burdensome care” for things like dehydration and infections, the study found, and use of the intensive care unit (ICU) in the last month of life, which had increased until 2009, has stabilized.
NHPCO Releases Updated Edition of “Standards of Practice for Hospice Programs”
With the growth and visibility of hospice care in the U.S., it is essential that hospice organizations offer the highest levels of quality care and demonstrate a commitment to organizational excellence.
Humana, Curo Health acquisition complete
Louisville-based Humana Inc., one of the nation’s largest provider of health benefits for seniors, is now one of the largest health care providers for older Americans in the nation. The company announced Wednesday it completed the acquisition of Mooresville, N.C.-based hospice company Curo Health Services LLC.
For terminally ill cancer patients, where you live can shape end-of-life care
If you are a terminally ill cancer patient, where you live can determine how much it will cost for you to die. The last month of life for a Medicare patient diagnosed with advanced-stage lung or colorectal cancer cost an average of $13,663, according to a study published today in the journal Health Affairs.
Palliative Sedation, an End-of-Life Practice That Is Legal Everywhere
… While aid-in-dying, or “death with dignity,” is now legal in seven states and Washington, D.C., medically assisted suicide retains tough opposition. Palliative sedation, though, has been administered since the hospice care movement began in the 1960s and is legal everywhere.
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