(a) CMS establishes payment amounts for specific categories of covered hospice care.
(b) Payment amounts are determined within each of the following categories:
(1) Routine home care day. A routine home care day is a day on which an individual who has elected to receive hospice care is at home and is not receiving continuous care as defined in paragraph (b)(2) of this section.
(i) Service intensity add-on. Routine home care days that occur during the last 7 days of a hospice election ending with a patient discharged due to death are eligible for a service intensity add-on payment.
(ii) The service intensity add-on payment shall be equal to the continuous home care hourly payment rate, as described in paragraph (e)(4) of this section, multiplied by the amount of direct patient care actually provided by a RN and/or social worker, up to 4 hours total per day.
(2) Continuous home care day. A continuous home care day is a day on which an individual who has elected to receive hospice care is not in an inpatient facility and receives hospice care consisting predominantly of nursing care on a continuous basis at home. Home health aide (also known as a hospice aide) or homemaker services or both may also be provided on a continuous basis. Continuous home care is only furnished during brief periods of crisis as described in § 418.204(a) and only as necessary to maintain the terminally ill patient at home.
(3) Inpatient respite care day. An inpatient respite care day is a day on which the individual who has elected hospice care receives care in an approved facility on a short-term basis for respite.
(4) General inpatient care day. A general inpatient care day is a day on which an individual who has elected hospice care receives general inpatient care in an inpatient facility for pain control or acute or chronic symptom management which cannot be managed in other settings.
(c) The payment amounts for the categories of hospice care are fixed payment rates that are established by CMS in accordance with the procedures described in § 418.306. Payment rates are determined for the following categories:
(1) Routine home care.
(2) Continuous home care.
(3) Inpatient respite care.
(4) General inpatient care.
(1) The Medicare Administrative Contractor reimburses the hospice its appropriate payment amount for each day for which an eligible Medicare beneficiary is under the hospice's care.
(2) Effective December 8, 2003, if a hospice makes arrangements with another hospice to provide services under the circumstances specified in section 1861(dd)(5)(D) of the Act, the Medicare Administrative Contractor reimburses the hospice for which the beneficiary has made an election as described in paragraph (d)(1) of this section.
(e) The Medicare Administrative Contractor makes payment according to the following procedures:
(1) Payment is made to the hospice for each day during which the beneficiary is eligible and under the care of the hospice, regardless of the amount of services furnished on any given day (except as set out in paragraph (b)(1)(i) of this section).
(2) Payment is made for only one of the categories of hospice care described in § 418.302(b) for any particular day.
(3) On any day on which the beneficiary is not an inpatient, the hospice is paid the routine home care rate, unless the patient receives continuous care as defined in paragraph (b)(2) of this section for a period of at least 8 hours. In that case, a portion of the continuous care day rate is paid in accordance with paragraph (e)(4) of this section.
(4) The hospice payment on a continuous care day varies depending on the number of hours of continuous services provided. The continuous home care rate is divided by 24 to yield an hourly rate. The number of hours of continuous care provided during a continuous home care day is then multiplied by the hourly rate to yield the continuous home care payment for that day. A minimum of 8 hours of care must be furnished on a particular day to qualify for the continuous home care rate.
(5) Subject to the limitations described in paragraph (f) of this section, on any day on which the beneficiary is an inpatient in an approved facility for inpatient care, the appropriate inpatient rate (general or respite) is paid depending on the category of care furnished. The inpatient rate (general or respite) is paid for the date of admission and all subsequent inpatient days, except the day on which the patient is discharged. For the day of discharge, the appropriate home care rate is paid unless the patient dies as an inpatient. In the case where the beneficiary is discharged deceased, the inpatient rate (general or respite) is paid for the discharge day. Payment for inpatient respite care is subject to the requirement that it may not be provided consecutively for more than 5 days at a time. Payment for the sixth and any subsequent day of respite care is made at the routine home care rate.
(f) Payment for inpatient care is limited as follows:
(1) The total payment to the hospice for inpatient care (general or respite) is subject to a limitation that total inpatient care days for Medicare patients not exceed 20 percent of the total days for which these patients had elected hospice care.
(2) At the end of a cap period, the Medicare Administrative Contractor calculates a limitation on payment for inpatient care to ensure that Medicare payment is not made for days of inpatient care in excess of 20 percent of the total number of days of hospice care furnished to Medicare patients. Only inpatient days that were provided and billed as general inpatient or respite days are counted as inpatient days when computing the inpatient cap.
(3) If the number of days of inpatient care furnished to Medicare patients is equal to or less than 20 percent of the total days of hospice care to Medicare patients, no adjustment is necessary. Overall payments to a hospice are subject to the cap amount specified in § 418.309.
(4) If the number of days of inpatient care furnished to Medicare patients exceeds 20 percent of the total days of hospice care to Medicare patients, the total payment for inpatient care is determined in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (f)(5) of this section. That amount is compared to actual payments for inpatient care, and any excess reimbursement must be refunded by the hospice. Overall payments to the hospice are subject to the cap amount specified in § 418.309.
(5) If a hospice exceeds the number of inpatient care days described in paragraph (f)(4), the total payment for inpatient care is determined as follows:
(i) Calculate the ratio of the maximum number of allowable inpatient days to the actual number of inpatient care days furnished by the hospice to Medicare patients.
(ii) Multiply this ratio by the total reimbursement for inpatient care made by the Medicare Administrative Contractor.
(iii) Multiply the number of actual inpatient days in excess of the limitation by the routine home care rate.
(g) Payment for routine home care, continuous home care, general inpatient care and inpatient respite care is made on the basis of the geographic location where the services are provided.
[48 FR 56026, Dec. 16, 1983, as amended at 56 FR 26919, June 12, 1991; 70 FR 45145, Aug. 4, 2005; 70 FR 70547, Nov. 22, 2005; 72 FR 50228, Aug. 31, 2007; 74 FR 39414, Aug. 6, 2009; 80 FR 47206, Aug. 6, 2015]