Thursday, August 14, 2014
Access to Simultaneous Dialysis and Hospice Care Upheld in CMS Ruling
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule (CMS-1609-F) updating the Medicare hospice wage index and hospice payment rates for fiscal year 2015. Thus, hospices serving Medicare beneficiaries will see an estimated increase of $230 million in their payments. CMS also confirmed that patients can continue to receive both dialysis services and hospice services for terminal conditions other than ESRD. ASN had urged CMS to continue to support the eligibility of dialysis patients with non–ESRD-related terminal diagnoses to receive Medicare- covered services under both the Medicare ESRD and Hospice programs, and the society was pleased CMS acknowledged the importance of this access to care in its final rule.