Members of the House Ways and Means Committee yesterday introduced legislation (H.R. 3298) that would establish a value-based purchasing program for home health agencies, skilled nursing facilities, inpatient rehabilitation facilities and long-term care hospitals beginning Oct. 1, 2019. According to the committee, the program would use one quality measure – Medicare spending per beneficiary – and require the Health and Human Services Secretary to establish a performance standard for the measure for each provider type. To fund the incentive pool, the secretary would reduce annual payments by 3% in fiscal year 2019 and increase the pool by one percentage point each year until it reaches 8% in FY 2025. The bill also would repeal the 1% limit on the 2018 market-basket update for these providers.

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