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Home Health Articles

Pulse Home Health Care practices skilled health care procedures firmly rooted in the latest research and best practice policies. We routinely mail bulletins to physicians and other medical referral sources to highlight how we help patients and to explain the scientific basis for different services. Here we share selected physician bulletins about Pulse's Home Health Services. If you have questions about how home health could help you, please contact us today.

Medicare Changes Home Health Eligibility

What Doctors Need to Know to Get Home Health for Patients in 2011


In 2011, Medicare will require additional paperwork from physicians in certifying and documenting orders for home health care.  Pulse Home Health Care will make this paperwork easy. 

In recent months, this bulletin reported research showing how better management of transitions of care reduces rehospitalization, reduces Medicare spending, and improves patient recovery.  The federal government has been reading that same research, and they have taken measures to ensure that more patients seek appropriate post-acute / pre-acute care from a doctor.  One of these measures is the new face-to-face encounter requirement for home health eligibility.

Starting January 1, to be eligible for Medicare home health services, a patient must have a face-to-face encounter with the doctor (or a designated professional working with the doctor) within 90 days before or 30 days after the home health start of care.  The physician must document, separately from the visit notes, how the visit pertained to the home health care diagnosis, how the patient is homebound, and what skilled need the patient has that merits home health care.  For our valued physicians, Pulse will make this documentation easy.  When we send the normal plan of care (the CMS 485), we will send an addendum to document the required face-to-face encounter.  With four fill-in-the-blank questions and two or more free-form sentences, Pulse will make meeting the new documentation requirements fast and easy for physicians.

Below, we provide a few samples of the types of notes that would be appropriate on the documentation of the face-to-face visit.

Documenting Skilled Need

  • Patient requires skilled observation and assessment due to a likelihood of exacerbation of (CHF, COPD, CAO, etc.).
  • Patient requires skilled nursing for wound care and training of patient and informal caregivers.
  • Patient demonstrates a likelihood of fall-injuries and requires a fall reduction rehabilitation program.
  • Due to a recent change in medication regimen and therapeutic diet, patient requires additional skilled teaching.

Documenting Homebound Status

  • Patient requires crutches to leave the home secondary to stroke.
  • Home health diagnosis has left patient in weakened state, and patient requires human assistance to leave the home.
  • Temporary loss of use of upper extremity makes unnecessary trips away from the home contraindicated.
  • Current state of heart disease makes potential stress of leaving the home contraindicated.
  • Patient is senile and requires human assistance to leave the home safely.

Please offer Pulse Home Health Care to your patients.

2325 Severn Ave, Ste 5 Pulse Home Health CareMetairie LA 70001 Pulse Home Health Care(504) 831-7778

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