The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services yesterday issued a proposed rule to update hospice payment rates for fiscal year 2023. CMS proposes a 2.7% ($580 million) net increase to payments compared with FY 2022. This includes a 3.1% market basket update, a 0.4 percentage point cut for productivity, and an annual payment cap per patient of $32,142.65. CMS also proposes a permanent mitigation policy for wage index year-to-year changes — a 5% cap on reductions relative to the prior year. In addition, the rule provides updates and seeks feedback on the development of a patient assessment tool and quality measures related to patient experience; and contains a request for information on health equity, including the concept of a structural quality measure to assess a hospice’s commitment to addressing health equity. CMS will accept comments on the rule through May 31.

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