Medicare Program; FY 2024 Hospice Wage Index and Payment Rate Update, Hospice Conditions of Participation Updates, Hospice Quality Reporting Program Requirements, and Hospice Certifying Physician Provider Enrollment Requirements, Federal Register, v.88, n.64, April 4, 2023, pp.20022-20057; Proposed Rule;

SUMMARY: This proposed rule would update the hospice wage index, payment rates, and aggregate cap amount for fiscal year (FY) 2024. This rule includes information on hospice utilization trends and solicits comments regarding information related to the provision of higher levels of hospice care; spending patterns for non-hospice services provided during the election of the hospice benefit; ownership transparency; equipping patients and caregivers with information to inform hospice selection; and ways to examine health equity under the hospice benefit. This rule also proposes conforming regulations text changes related to the anticipated expiration of the COVID–19 public health emergency (PHE). In addition, this rule proposes updates to the Hospice Quality Reporting Program; discusses the Hospice Outcomes and Patient Evaluation tool; provides an update on Health Equity and future quality measures; and provides updates on the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems, Hospice Survey Mode Experiment. This rule also proposes to codify hospice data submission thresholds and discusses updates to hospice survey and enforcement procedures. Additionally, the rule proposes to require hospice certifying physicians to be Medicare- enrolled or to have validly opted-out. DATE: To be assured consideration, comments must be received at one of the addresses provided by May 30, 2023.

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