AAHomecare Calls for Access, Audit Input

Association urges providers to submit data for 2nd quarter Audit Key survey, and to help lay groundwork for broad participation in patient access survey.

The American Association for Homecare is calling for providers to support two key surveys it is driving: the quarterly Audit Key, and a special survey on patient access. Both surveys are used to help make the industry’s case on Capitol Hill for regulatory reforms.

Audit Key began taking data submissions for the 2nd Quarter of 2017 on July 17. To register and submit information, visit HMEAuditKey.org. Additional information is available at http://bit.ly/1k18xAv . 

Registration and participation in Audit Key are free and open to all suppliers, not just AAHomecare members. Also, providers that haven’t yet participated in Audit key, or that have skipped rounds can still submit data. 

As part of an effort to make Audit Key participation easy, providers using Brightree can print a report from their My Files folder to answer many of the operational questions on the quarterly survey. Users can retrieve the report named AAH_Output.csv from the Inbox for the My Files page within Brightree, and then open the report in a spreadsheet program such as Microsoft Excel. Comprehensive guidance for using the Brightree report is available as aPDF or a Microsoft Word document . 

“When performing data analysis to capture the burdensome nature of today's audits, data accuracy is critical,” said Kaitlin Nacarato, Director of Audits & Revenue Enhancement for Carolina’s Home Medical Equipment. “Brightree's recent partnership with AAHomecare in the development of a report which gathers all of the answers to the Audit Key's operational questions ensures that the data submitted is accurate without being labor intensive.”

Patient Access Data

As part of the preparation for what AAHomecare is calling a “major” research effort to study patient access to HME in competitive bidding areas, non-bid areas and rural areas, the association reminded providers that they can help by encouraging beneficiaries, case managers and discharge planners to participate in the survey.

The American Association for Homecare has contracted healthcare research group Dobson DaVanzo & Associates to help carry out a study will collect perspectives from HME providers, Medicare beneficiaries, caregivers and hospital discharge planners and staff on how competitive bidding has impacted access to HME. Dobson DaVanzo will analyze survey results and develop a report on participants’ experiences.

The study is a response to regulatory policymakers and members of congress who have noted that information on Medicare beneficiary access to HME is critical to improving the bidding program and fiving relief to rural and non-bid providers. Despite working with a more amenable HHS and CMS, AAHomecare stressed that data that provides a clear picture of the situation for those providers and patients is “vitally important” in shaping those policies.

Providers who want to take part in the survey, including helping to recruit patients or discharge planners/case managers, should contact Ashley Plauche, AAHomecare manager of government affairs, at ashleyp@aahomecare.org. Also, since many patients might not be in the best psotion to respond to an online survey, Dobson DaVanzo will conduct patient interviews by phone on an as needed basis. .


About the Author

David Kopf is the Editor of HME Business.

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