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Behavioral Health focus greater in 2018 proposed PPS rule for home health published in the Federal R

In the 2018 proposed PPS rule for home health that was published in the Federal Register on July 28, CMS proposes to adopt several data elements that assess cognitive impairment, behavioral signs and symptoms and mental status (Depressed mood). The Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation ACT (IMPACT ACT) requires CMS to develop, implement, and maintain standardized patient assessment data elements across the PAC settings.

At C&V , we have always recognized the importance of assessing and managing cognitive function and mental status as they directly impact patient's overall outcomes. Not addressing these factors can lead to re-hospitalization, noncompliance, poorer outcomes and high caregiver burden.

The standardized assessment tools that CMS is proposing are currently used in other Post-Acute Care settings to determine cognition, behavioral symptoms and mental status. The proposed rule would add the Brief Interview for Mental Status (BIMS), The Confusion Assessment Method (CAM) and a new item on Behavioral Signs and Symptoms. The PHQ-2 which is In current OASIS is being suggested as a required assessment for purposes of standardization.

These steps are vitally important to providing comprehensive patient-centered care in the home health setting.

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