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TRICARE Reimbursement Manual 6010.61-M, April 1, 2015
Birthing Centers
Chapter 11
Section 4
Hospice Reimbursement - Guidelines For Payment Of Designated Levels Of Care
Issue Date:  February 6, 1995
Authority:  32 CFR 199.14(g)
Revision:  C-75, November 17, 2023
1.0  APPLICABILITY
This policy is mandatory for reimbursement of services provided by either network or non-network providers. However, alternative network reimbursement methodologies are permitted when approved by the Defense Health Agency (DHA) and specifically included in the network provider agreement.
2.0  ISSUE
To establish procedural guidelines for reimbursement of hospice care.
3.0  POLICY
3.1  Hospice Program Reimbursement
Hospice care is reimbursed at one of four predetermined national Medicare rates (refer to the tables in Addendums B (urban) and C (rural) based upon the type and intensity of services furnished to the beneficiary. The labor-related portions of each of these rates are adjusted by the wage index applicable to the hospice program providing the care (refer to paragraph 3.1.2, for further explanation). A single rate is applicable for each day of care except for Continuous Home Care (CHC) where payment is based upon the number of hours of care furnished during a 24-hour period.
3.1.1  Levels Of Reimbursement
The TRICARE Program uses the national Medicare hospice rates for reimbursement of each of the following levels of care provided by or under arrangement with an approved hospice program:
3.1.1.1  Routine Home Care (RHC)
The hospice is paid an RHC rate for each day the patient is at home, under the care of the hospice, and not receiving continuous care. Payment for RHC (i.e., revenue code 651) is based upon the geographic location at which the service is furnished as opposed to the location of the hospice.
3.1.1.2  Prior to December 31, 2015, hospices will be paid a single Routine Home Care (RHC) payment amount regardless of the volume or intensity of RHC services provided on any given day.
Example:  TRICARE reimbursement for 30 days of RHC from November 1, 2016, through November 30, 2016, in Chicago, Illinois.
Wage Component Subject to Index
x
Index for Chicago
=
Adjusted Wage Component
$111.23
x
1.0416
=
$115.86
Adjusted Wage Component
+
Nonwage Component
=
Adjusted
Rate
x
30 days
Home Care
=
Routine Rate
$115.86
+
$50.66
=
$166.52
x
30
=
$4,995.60
3.1.1.3  Effective January 1, 2016, two separate payment rates have been established for RHC level of care depending on the timing of the day within the patient’s episode of care. Days one through 60 are paid at the RHC ‘High’ Rate, while days 61 and beyond are paid at the RHC ‘Low’ Rate as reflected in Addendum A. These differing rates serve to capture varying levels of resource intensity during the course of hospice care, as the beginning portion of the stay is more costly than the latter segment. Patient days used in determining which of the two RHC rates is reimbursed are calculated in accordance with the following provisions:
3.1.1.3.1  When a hospice patient is discharged and readmitted to a hospice within 60 days of that discharge, the patient’s prior hospice days continue to follow the patient and count toward the beneficiary’s patient days for the new hospice election. The hospice days continue to follow the patient solely to determine whether the receiving hospice is paid at the day one through 60 RHC rate or day 61 and beyond RHC rate. The patient’s episode day count is based upon the total number of days the patient has been receiving hospice care, separated by no more than a 60-day gap in hospice care, regardless of level of care or whether those days were billable or not. This includes hospice days that occurred prior to January 1, 2016.
3.1.1.3.2  For hospice patients discharged from hospice care for more than 60 days, a new election to hospice initiates a reset of the new patient’s 60-day window, resulting in payment at the RHC ‘High’ Rate.
Example:  
•  Patient elected hospice for the first time on January 10, 2016.
•  The patient revoked hospice on January 30, 2016.
•  The patient re-elected hospice on February 6, 2016.
•  The patient is discharged deceased from hospice care on March 28, 2016.
Since the break in hospice care from January 30, 2016, to February 6, 2016 was less than 60 days, the inpatient day count continues on the second admission. RHC provided during the first election from January 10, 2016, to January 30, 2016, accounts for 21 days that the high RHC rate applies. The 60-day count continues with the second admission on February 6, 2016, and the high RHC rate applies for an additional 39 days. Day 61 begins the low RHC rate on March 16, 2016.
Multiple RHC days are reported on a single line item on the claim. The line item date of service represents the first date at the level of care, and the units represent the number of days. As a result, both high and low RHC rates may apply to a single line item. Extending the example above, if the March claims for this patient consisted entirely of RHC days at home, the payment line item looks like this:
Revenue Code - 0651
Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) - Q5001
Line Item Date of Service - 03/01/2016
TRICARE Systems:
•  Calculate the dates from 03/01 to 03/15 at the high RHC rate;
•  Calculate the dates from 03/16 to 03/31 at the low RHC rate; and
•  Sum these two amounts in the payment applied to this line item.
3.1.1.4  Effective January 1, 2016, a Service Intensity Add-on (SIA) payment may be provided for RHC days when direct patient care is provided by a Registered Nurse (RN) or social worker during the last seven days of the patient’s life (and the beneficiary is discharged deceased). The SIA is a payment that may be made in addition to the per diem rate for the RHC level of care. The SIA payment equals the CHC hourly rate multiplied by the hours of RN nursing/social work services for at least 15 minutes and up to a total of four hours (no greater than 16 units) that occurred on a RHC day during the last seven days of life adjusted for geographic differences in wages.
3.1.1.4.1  It is expected that at the End Of Life (EOL) the needs of the patient and family intensify, requiring the specialized skills of an interdisciplinary group RN. To quantify the amount of RN services subject to SIA payment, hospice claims shall differentiate between nursing services provided by an RN and nursing services provided by a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN).
3.1.1.4.2  Effective for hospice dates of service on or after January 1, 2016, the single G-code of G0154 for “Direct skilled nursing services of a licensed nurse (LPN or RN) in the home health or hospice setting” is retired and replaced with G-codes G0299 “direct skilled nursing services of a registered nurse (RN) in the home health or hospice setting” and G0300 “direct skilled nursing services of a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) in the home health or hospice setting.”
Example:  Billing Period: 12/01/XXXX - 12/09/XXXX, Patient Status: 40
RHC in home, discharged deceased.
Revenue Code
HCPCS
Line Item Date of Service
Units
*Visits reported prior to 12/03/XX are not included in EOL seven day SIA.
Day 1 of 7, 12/03/XX, no qualifying units reported for the EOL SIA.Day 2 of 7, 12/04/XX, no qualifying units reported for the EOL SIA.
Day 3 of 7, 12/05/XX, qualifying units are 4. Day 3 of the EOL SIA payment is stored on the first applicable visit line for that date: 0561 G0155 12/05/XX UNITS 4.
Day 4 of 7, 12/06/XX, qualifying units are 3. Day 4 of the EOL SIA payment is stored on the first applicable visit line for that date: 0551 G0299 12/06/XX UNITS 3.
Day 5 of 7, 12/07/XX, no qualifying units reported for the EOL SIA.
Day 6 of 7, 12/08/XX, no qualifying units reported for the EOL SIA.
Day 7 of 7, 12/09/XX, qualifying units are 10. Day 7 of the EOL SIA payment is stored on the first applicable visit line for that date: 0551 G0299 12/09/XX UNITS 4.
0651*
Q5001
12/01/XX
9
0551*
G0154
12/01/XX
4
0571
G0156
12/02/XX
6
0561
G0155
12/05/XX
4
0571
G0156
12/05/XX
3
0551
G0299
12/06/XX
3
0571
G0156
12/06/XX
4
0551
G0299
12/09/XX
4
0561
G0155
12/09/XX
6
0571
G0156
12/09/XX
2
3.1.1.5  Continuous Home Care
The hospice is paid the CHC rate when CHC is provided. Payment for continuous care (i.e., revenue code 652) is based upon the geographic location at which the service is furnished as opposed to the location of the hospice. Divide the continuous home care rate by 24 hours to arrive at an hourly rate. Use the following provisions for payment of this level of care:
3.1.1.5.1  A minimum of eight hours of care is provided within a 24-hour period, starting and ending at midnight. If less than eight hours of care are provided within a 24-hour period, the care is paid at the lower RHC rate. The home health rate used is dependent on the timing of the day within the beneficiary’s episode of care (i.e., days one through 60 are paid at the RHC high rate, while days 61 and beyond are paid at the RHC low rate.)
3.1.1.5.2  More than half of the continuous home care is provided by either a RN or LPN, (i.e., an RN or LPN provides more than one-half of the total hours being billed for each 24-hour period).
3.1.1.5.3  Homemaker and home health aide services may be provided to supplement the nursing care to enable the beneficiary to remain at home.
3.1.1.5.4  For every hour or part of an hour of continuous care furnished, the hourly rate is reimbursed to the hospice up to 24 hours per day. A part of an hour is rounded to a whole hour for each hour of continuous care during a 24-hour period.
3.1.1.5.5  In situations where accumulative hours are not associated with specific dates of service and the average number of hours per day is equal to or greater than eight hours then the eight hour minimum has been met for each of the dates of service for continuous home care.
Example:  A hospice billed for 24 hours of continuous home care over a four day period. Since the average number of hours was less than eight hours per day (24 hours divided by four days equals six hours per day), development is required. If the number of hours had been 32 hours or more, then the beneficiary had received eight or more hours for each day of CHC billed on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) 1450 UB-04.
Note:  Reimbursement is extended for routine and continuous hospice care provided to beneficiaries residing in a nursing home facility, that is, physician, nurse, social worker, and home health aide visits to patients requiring palliative care for a terminal illness. The TRICARE Program does not pay for the room and board charges of the nursing home.
3.1.1.6  Inpatient Respite Care
The hospice is paid at the inpatient respite care rate for each day on which the beneficiary is in an approved inpatient facility and is receiving respite care. Payment for inpatient respite care (revenue code 655) is based upon the geographic location of the hospice.
3.1.1.6.1  Payment for respite care may be made for a maximum of five days at a time, including the date of admission but not counting the date of discharge.
3.1.1.6.2  Payment for the sixth and any subsequent days is to be made at the RHC rate. The home health rate used will be dependent on the timing of the day within the beneficiary’s episode of care (i.e., days one through 60 will be paid at the RHC high rate, while days 61 and beyond will be paid at the RHC low rate.)
Note:  Respite care is only provided on an occasional basis and then only if it is part of the overall treatment plan. The interdisciplinary treatment group determines the appropriateness and frequency of respite care. Only those respite days which are actually paid at the inpatient respite rate are counted toward the inpatient limitation (e.g., a respite stay of 15 days is only reimbursed for five days of inpatient respite care, and as such, only those five days are counted toward the inpatient limitation).
3.1.1.7  General Inpatient Care
Payment at the inpatient rate is made when general inpatient care is provided. None of the other fixed payment rates (i.e., RHC) are applicable for a day on which the patient receives general inpatient care except on the date of discharge. Payment for general inpatient care (revenue code 656) is based upon the geographic location of the hospice.
3.1.2  Area Wage Adjustment
An area wage index is applied to the wage portion of the applicable national hospice rate for each day of care.
3.1.2.1  Area wage indexes are used in the calculation of hospice rates for care/services.
3.1.2.1.1  Wage indexes in Addendum B (urban), are used in the adjustment of rates for hospice programs located within designated urban areas.
3.1.2.1.2  Wage indexes in Addendum C (rural), are used in the adjustment of rates for hospice programs located within designated rural areas.
Note:  The above Medicare area wage adjustments are reflected in each of the rate calculation examples under levels of reimbursement (refer to paragraph 3.1.1). The wage index factors which are used for hospice care (Addendums B (urban) and C (rural)) are different from those being used for DRGs and mental health per diems. These wage index factors have been in use since the inception of the Medicare hospice benefit in 1983.
3.1.3  Date of Discharge
For the day of discharge from an inpatient unit, the appropriate home care rate is paid unless the patient dies as an inpatient. When the patient is discharged deceased, the inpatient rate (general or respite) is paid for the discharge date.
3.1.4  Physician Reimbursement
Payment is dependent on the physician’s relationship with both the beneficiary and the hospice program.
3.1.4.1  Physicians Employed By, or Contracted With, the Hospice
3.1.4.1.1  Administrative and supervisory activities (i.e., establishment, review and updating of plans of care, supervising care and services, and establishing governing policies) are included in the adjusted national payment rate.
3.1.4.1.2  Direct patient care services are paid in addition to the adjusted national payment rate.
•  Physician services are reimbursed an amount equivalent to 100 percent of the TRICARE allowable charge (i.e., hospice-based physician services direct hands-on care) are not subject to standard TRICARE cost-sharing and deductible provisions.
•  Physician payments are counted toward the hospice cap limitation.
3.1.4.2  Individual Attending Physician
Patient care services rendered by an individual attending physician (a physician who is not considered employed by, or under contract with, the hospice) are not part of the hospice benefit.
3.1.4.2.1  Reimbursement of Services
3.1.4.2.1.1  An attending physician may bill in the physician’s own right.
3.1.4.2.1.2  The definition of attending physician, includes Nurse Practitioners (NPs) for patient care services. However, the NP shall not certify the beneficiary as terminally ill.
3.1.4.2.1.3  Services are subject to the appropriate allowable charge methodology.
3.1.4.2.1.4  Reimbursement is not counted toward the cap limitation.
3.1.4.2.2  Coordination of Services
3.1.4.2.2.1   Services provided by an individual attending physician shall coordinated with any direct care services provided by hospice physicians. This coordination is assessed as part of the post-payment medical review process.
3.1.4.2.2.2  The hospice shall notify the contractor of the name of the physician or NP whenever the attending physician is not a hospice employee.
Note:  The hospice shall notify the contractor of the name of the attending physician or NP as part of the information to be supplied on the admission notice (CMS 1450 Uniform Billing (UB)-04). Refer to Items 76 and 77, Section 3. The independent attending physician or NP is the only outside provider that may provide care to the hospice patient. The contractor shall not monitor this billing, since it is submitted independently of the hospice.
3.1.4.3  Voluntary Services
There is no payment for physician services furnished voluntarily (both physicians employed by and under contract with the hospice and individual attending physicians). Physicians shall not discriminate against beneficiaries (e.g., designate all services rendered to non-TRICARE patients as volunteer and at the same time bill for TRICARE patients).
3.1.5  Concurrent Care Services
Specific reimbursement instructions for concurrent hospice services and curative care for beneficiaries under the age of 21 are detailed inSection 5.
3.1.6  Cap on Overall Reimbursement
Each TRICARE-approved hospice program is subject to a cap on aggregate TRICARE payments from November 1 through October 31 of each year, hereafter known as “the cap period”.
3.1.6.1  Calculation/Application of Cap Amount
The contractor shall calculate and apply the cap amount at the end of each cap period using the following guidelines:
3.1.6.1.1  The “cap amount” is calculated by multiplying the number of TRICARE beneficiaries electing hospice care (numbers of beneficiaries electing hospice care during the period beginning September 28 of the previous cap year through September 27 of the current cap year) during the period by a statutory amount determined each year by CMS.
3.1.6.1.2  The hospice cap is calculated in a different manner for new hospices entering the program if the hospice has not participated in the program for an entire cap year. In this situation, the initial cap calculations for newly certified hospices cover a period of at least 12 months but not more than 23 months.
3.1.6.1.3  The aggregate cap amount is compared with total actual TRICARE payments made during the same cap period.
•  “Total payment” refers to payment for services furnished during the cap year beginning November 1 and ending October 31, regardless of when payment is actually made.
•  Payments are measured in terms of all payments made to hospices on behalf of all TRICARE beneficiaries receiving services during the cap year, regardless of which year the beneficiary is counted in determining the cap (i.e., all TRICARE beneficiaries within a particular hospice program).
•  Payments made to a hospice for an individual electing hospice care on October 5, 2014, pertaining to services rendered in the cap year beginning November 1, 2014, and ending October 31, 2015, is counted as payments made during that cap year (November 1, 2014 - October 31, 2015), even though the individual would not be counted in the calculation of the cap for that year. However, the individual is to be counted in the cap calculation for the following year, because the election occurred after September 27.
3.1.6.1.4  The hospice shall report the number of TRICARE beneficiaries electing hospice care during the “cap period” to the contractor within 30 days after the end of the “cap period.”
3.1.6.1.5  The cap amount is adjusted annually by the percent of increase or decrease in the medical expenditure category of the Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers (Consumer Price Index-Urban (Wage Earner) (CPI-U)).
3.1.6.1.6  DHA obtains the adjusted cap amount from CMS prior to the end of each cap period and provides it to the contractor.
3.1.6.1.7  Payments in excess of the cap amount are refunded by the hospice program.
3.1.6.2  Determining Number of Elections
The hospice shall adhere to the following rules in determining the number of TRICARE beneficiaries who have elected hospice care during the period:
3.1.6.2.1  The beneficiary has not been counted previously in either another hospice’s cap or another reporting year.
3.1.6.2.2  The beneficiary must file an initial election during the period beginning September 28 of the previous cap year through September 27 of the current cap year to be counted as an electing TRICARE beneficiary during the current cap year.
3.1.6.2.3  Once a beneficiary has been included in the calculation of a hospice cap amount, the beneficiary shall not be included in the cap for that hospice again, even if the number of covered days in a subsequent reporting period exceeds that of the period where the beneficiary was included.
3.1.6.2.4  There is proportional application of the cap amount when a beneficiary elects to receive hospice benefits from two or more different TRICARE-certified hospices. A calculation is made to determine the percentage of the patient’s Length Of Stay (LOS) in each hospice relative to the total length of hospice stay.
3.1.6.2.4.1   The contractor having jurisdiction over the hospice program in which the beneficiary dies or exhausts the hospice benefit shall determine the proportionate LOS for all preceding hospices.
3.1.6.2.4.2  The contractor shall also disseminate this information to any other contractors having jurisdiction for hospices in which the beneficiary was previously enrolled.
Note:  While the crossing of contractor jurisdictional areas (care in hospices located in different jurisdictional areas) is relatively rare, it may occasionally happen. Care in another jurisdictional area can only be detected if it is reported in the admission notice or detected upon retrospective (post payment) medical review; e.g., in the case of a change in election, the second (receiving) hospice shall use Item 38 (CMS 1450 UB-04) of the admission notice to indicate the transferring hospice’s complete name, address, and provider number. The contractor shall determine the method of reporting. The contractor shall share the information with the other contractor as soon as possible after the demise of the beneficiary so that the other contractor has ample time to adjust the elections used in calculating the hospice’s cap amount. The contractor shall maintain this information for end of the year reconciliation (figuring of cap amounts).
3.1.6.2.4.3  Each contractor shall then adjust the number of beneficiaries reported by these hospices based upon the latest information at the time the cap is applied.
3.1.6.3  Readjustment of Cap Amount
Readjustment may be required if information previously unavailable to the contractor at the time the hospice cap is applied subsequently becomes available.
3.1.6.4  Apportionment of Election Between Cap Years
Use the following guidelines when more than one TRICARE-certified hospice provides care to the same individual, and the care overlaps two cap years:
3.1.6.4.1  Each contractor shall determine in which cap year the fraction of a beneficiary is reported.
3.1.6.4.1.1  If the beneficiary entered the hospice before September 28, the fractional beneficiary is included in the current cap year.
3.1.6.4.1.2  If the beneficiary entered the hospice after September 27, the fractional beneficiary is included in the following cap year.
3.1.6.4.2  Where services are rendered by two different hospices to one TRICARE patient, and one of the hospices is not certified by the TRICARE Program, no proportional application is necessary. The contractor shall count one patient and use the total cap for the certified hospice.
3.1.6.5  Hospice Participation at Any Time Other Than Beginning of Cap Year (November 1)
In those situations where a hospice begins participation in the TRICARE Program at any time other than the beginning of a cap year (November 1), and hence has an initial cap calculation for a period in excess of 12 months, a weighted average cap amount is used.
Note:  If Hospice A had been certified in mid-month, a weighted average cap amount based upon the number of days falling within each cap period is used.
3.1.7  Inpatient Limitation
Payments for inpatient hospice care are subject to a limitation on the number of days of inpatient care furnished to a TRICARE patient.
3.1.7.1  During the 12-month period beginning November 1 of each year and ending October 31, the aggregate number of inpatient days, both for general inpatient care and respite care, shall not exceed 20 percent of the aggregate total number of days of hospice care provided to all TRICARE beneficiaries during the same period.
3.1.7.2  The inpatient limitation is applied once each year, at the end of the hospice’s “cap period” (November 1 - October 31).
3.1.7.3  If the contractor (who processes the claims) determines not to pay the inpatient rate, any days for which the hospice receives payment at a home care rate are not counted as inpatient days.
Note:  The contractor shall review the accuracy of the billing and the appropriateness of the care as part of the contractor medical review process. The contractor shall only look for trends/patterns on a random sampling of claims.
3.1.7.4  The contractor shall calculate the inpatient limitation servicing the hospice as follows:
3.1.7.4.1  The maximum allowable number of inpatient days are calculated by multiplying the total number of days of TRICARE hospice care by 0.2.
3.1.7.4.2  If the total number of days of inpatient care furnished to TRICARE hospice patients is less than or equal to the maximum, no adjustment is necessary.
3.1.7.4.3  If the total number of days of inpatient care exceeded the maximum allowable number, the limitation is determined by:
3.1.7.4.3.1  Calculating a ratio of the maximum allowable days to the number of actual days of inpatient care, multiplying this ratio by the total reimbursement for inpatient care (general inpatient and inpatient respite reimbursement) that was made.
3.1.7.4.3.2  Multiplying excess inpatient care days by the RHC rate.
3.1.7.4.3.3  Adding together the amounts calculated in paragraphs 3.1.7.4.3.1 and 3.1.7.4.3.2.
3.1.7.4.3.4  Comparing the amount in paragraph 3.1.7.4.3.3 with interim payments made to the hospice for inpatient care during the “cap period”.
3.1.7.4.4  Payments in excess of the inpatient limitation are refunded by the hospice program.
Example:  Inpatient Limitation
Step 1:  Maximum Allowable Inpatient Days (MAIDs) are calculated by multiplying the total number of days of TRICARE hospice care by 0.2.
Total TRICARE Hospice Days
x
Percent Inpatient Limitation
=
Maximum Allowable Number of Inpatient
1,237 days
x
0.2
=
247.44
Step 2:  Since the total number of days (292 days) of inpatient care exceed the maximum allowable number of inpatient days (rounded to 247 days) the limitation is determined by:
Step 2a:  Calculating the ratio of the maximum allowable days to the number of actual days of inpatient care and multiplying this ratio by the total reimbursement for inpatient care (general inpatient and inpatient respite reimbursement that was made).
MAIDs
x
Total Inpatient Reimbursement
=
Amount (a)
Actual Days of Inpatient Care
247 days
x
$91,854.70
=
$77,699.05
292 days
Step 2b:  Multiply excess inpatient days by the RHC rate.
Excess Inpatient Care Days
(Actual Days - MAIDs)
x
RHC Rate for Seattle
=
Amount (b)
(292 days - 245 days) = 45 days
x
$94.02
=
$4,230.90
Step 2c:  Add together amounts from Steps 2a and 2b.
Amount (a)
+
Amount (b)
=
Amount (c)
$77,699.05
+
$4,230.90
=
$81,929.95
Step 2d:  Compare amount from Step 2c with total TRICARE payments received and receivable for the cap period from November 1, 1993 through October 31, 1994.
Actual TRICARE Payments
-
Amount (c) Above of Inpatient
=
Payments in Excess Limitation
$91,354.75
-
$81,929.95
=
$9,424.80
3.1.8  Notification and Recoupment
The contractor shall notify those hospice programs which have been paid in excess of the aggregate cap amount, inpatient limitation, or both.
3.1.8.1  The contractor shall calculate the cap and inpatient amounts for each TRICARE hospice program and request a refund for those exceeding the calculated amounts.
Note:  The contractor is given discretion in developing its own letter/notice as long as it includes the data elements used in establishing each of its calculations and informs the hospice of the reconsideration provisions allowed under paragraph 3.1.11.
3.1.8.2  The contractor shall send all refund checks to the DHA Contract Resource Management (CRM) Directorate.
3.1.8.2.1  If the hospice fails to submit the refund, the contractor shall issue two additional demand letters sent out at appropriate intervals as required by the TRICARE Operations Manual (TOM).
3.1.8.2.2  The contractor shall not send copies of the demand letters to the beneficiary, and shall not place providers on offset to collect overpayments.
3.1.8.2.3  If the providers do not voluntarily refund the indebtedness in full, or do not enter into an installment repayment agreement, the contractor shall transfer recoupment cases to DHA in compliance with the TOM.
3.1.9  Hospice Reporting Responsibilities
Unlike current Medicare practice, under the TRICARE Program, the hospice reports the following data to the contractor within 30 days after the end of the cap period:
3.1.9.1  Data requirements.
3.1.9.1.1  Total number of TRICARE beneficiaries electing hospice care during the period beginning September 28 of the previous cap year through September 27 of the current cap year.
3.1.9.1.2  Total number of TRICARE hospice days (both inpatient and home care).
3.1.9.1.3  Total reimbursement received and receivable for the cap period for services furnished to TRICARE beneficiaries, including employed physician’s services not of an administrative or general supervisory nature.
3.1.9.1.4  Total reimbursement received and receivable for general inpatient and respite care during the cap period.
3.1.9.1.5  Aggregate number of TRICARE inpatient days for both general inpatient care and inpatient respite care during the cap period.
3.1.9.1.6  Aggregate number of TRICARE routine days during the cap period.
3.1.9.1.7  Aggregate total number of days of hospice care provided to all TRICARE beneficiaries during the cap period.
3.1.9.2  The contractor has discretion in designing its own report forms taking into consideration the above data requirements. The following is an example of an acceptable report form:
CAP PERIOD ENDED - October 31, ____
Hospice ____________________
Provider Number: ___________
1.  
Number of TRICARE beneficiaries electing hospice care during the period from 09/28/____ through 09/27/____.
2.  
Total payment received and receivable for the cap period from 11/01/____ through 10/31/____ for services furnished to TRICARE beneficiaries during the cap period, including employed physician’s services not of an administrative or general supervisory nature.
3.  
Total reimbursement received and receivable for general inpatient care and inpatient respite care furnished to TRICARE beneficiaries for the period from 11/01/____ through 10/31/____.
4.  
Aggregate number of TRICARE inpatient days for both general inpatient care and inpatient respite care for the period from 11/01/____ through 10/31/____.
a.  
Aggregate number of TRICARE routine days for the period from 11/01/____ through 10/31/____.
b.  
Aggregate number of TRICARE continuous home care hours for the period 11/01/____ through 10/31/____.
5.  
Aggregate total number of days of hospice care provided to all TRICARE beneficiaries for the period from 11/01/____ through 10/31/____.
SIGNATURE
DATE
TITLE
3.1.10  End of Year Reconciliation
The contractor shall calculate of the cap amount and inpatient limitation for each TRICARE approved hospice program within its jurisdictional area.
3.1.10.1  The information/data for calculation of the cap amount and inpatient limitation is taken directly from the data report form which the hospice submits to the contractor within 30 days after the end of the cap period (i.e., by December 1st of each year).
3.1.10.1.1  The contractor shall not validate this information unless there is a request for reconsideration by one of the hospice programs.
3.1.10.1.2  Adjustments to these end of year calculations shall be minimal since the hospice reports total payments received and receivable for the cap period.
3.1.10.1.3  Payments for hospital based physicians (billed by the hospice program on the CMS 1450 UB-04) are subject to the cap amount (i.e., it is figured into hospice payments made during the cap period).
3.1.10.1.4  Independent attending physician or NP services are not considered a part of the hospice benefit and are not figured into the cap amount calculations. The provider bills for the services on a CMS 1500 Claim Form using appropriate Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes.
3.1.10.2  The contractor shall have 30 days (until January 1st of each year) in which to calculate and apply the cap and inpatient amounts to each TRICARE approved hospice within its jurisdictional area. The contractor shall request a refund from those hospice programs found to exceed the calculated amounts.
3.1.10.2.1  The contractor has discretion in developing its own recoupment letter/notice as long as it includes the data elements used in establishing each of its calculations and informs the hospice of the reconsideration provisions allowed under paragraph 3.1.11.
3.1.10.2.2  The contractor shall send refund checks to the DHA CRM Directorate. If the hospice fails to submit the refund, the contractor shall issue two additional demand letters sent out at appropriate intervals as required by the TOM. The contractor shall not send copies of the demand letters to the beneficiary, and shall not place providers on offset to collect overpayments. If the providers do not voluntarily refund the indebtedness in full, or do not enter into an installment repayment agreement, the contractor shall transfer recoupment cases to DHA in compliance with the TOM.
3.1.11  Reconsideration of Cap Amount and Inpatient Limit
A hospice dissatisfied with the contractor’s calculation and application of its cap amount, inpatient limitation, or both, may request and obtain a contractor review if the amount of program reimbursement in controversy -- with respect to matters that the hospice has a right to review -- is at least $1000. The administrative review by the contractor of the calculation and application of the cap amount and inpatient limitation is the only administrative review available. These calculations are not subject to the appeal procedures set forth in 32 CFR 199.10. The hospice shall file a request for reconsideration no later than the 180th calendar day following the date the hospice received notice of the contractor’s determination.
Note:  The methods and standards for calculation of the hospice payment rates established by the TRICARE Program, as well as questions as to the validity of the applicable law, regulations or TRICARE decisions, are not subject to administrative review (the appeal procedures of 32 CFR 199.10).
3.1.12  Billing Procedures
Completion of the CMS 1450 UB-04 for hospice care. The following is information needed for completion of those items required for the billing of hospice care. Items not listed need not be completed unless otherwise required in double coverage situations.
3.1.12.1  Item 1 - Provider Name, Address, and Telephone Number Required
Enter name, city, state, and ZIP Code. The post office box number or street name and number may be included. The state may be abbreviated using standard post office abbreviations.
3.1.12.2  Item 4 - Type of Bill (TOB) Required
This three digit code gives three specific pieces of information. The first digit identifies the type of facility. The second digit classifies the type of care. The third digit indicates the sequence of this bill in this particular episode of care (referred to as a “frequency” code).
Code Structure
first Digit - Type of Facility
08 - Special (Hospice)
second Digit - Classification
1 - Hospice (Nonhospital-Based)
2 - Hospice (Hospital-Based)
third Digit - Frequency Definition
1 - Admit Through Discharge Claim
Use this code for a bill encompassing an entire course of hospice treatment for which you expect reimbursement (i.e., no further bills shall be submitted for this patient).
2 - Interim - First Claim
Use this code for the first of an expected series of payment bills for a hospice course of treatment.
3 - Interim - Continuing Claim
Use this code when a payment bill for a hospice course of treatment has been submitted and further bills are expected to be submitted.
4 - Interim - Last Claim
Use this code for a payment bill which is the last of a series for a hospice course of treatment. The “Through” date of this bill (Item 6) is the discharge date or date of death.
7 - Replacement of Prior Claim
Use this code to correct (other than late charges) a previously submitted bill. This is the code applied to the corrected or “new” code.
8 - Void/Cancel of a Prior Claim
This code indicates this bill is an exact duplicate of an incorrect bill previously submitted. Submit a code “7” (Replacement of Prior Claim) to show the corrected information.
3.1.12.3  Item 5 - Federal Tax Number
Enter Tax Identification Number (TIN) or Employer Identification Number (EIN) and the sub-ID assigned by the contractor.
3.1.12.4  Item 6 - Statement Covers Period (From-Through) Required
Show the beginning and ending dates of the period covered by this bill in numeric fields (MM-DD-YY). Do not show days before the patient’s eligibility began. Since the 12-month hospice “cap period” ends each year on October 31, hospice services for October and November are not submitted on the same bill. Use October 31 as a cutoff date. Submit separate bills for October and November.
Note:  If the hospice bills for services that cross the cap period split the bill and process the October portions through the cap period cutoff date of October 31. Return the November portion of the bill uncontrolled.
3.1.12.5  Item 12 - Patient’s Name Required
Show the patient’s name with the surname first, first name, and middle initial, if any.
3.1.12.6  Item 13 - Patient’s Address Required
Show the patient’s full mailing address including street name and number or Rural Farm District (RFD), city, state, and ZIP Code.
3.1.12.7  Item 14 - Patient’s Birthdate Required
Show the month, day, and year of birth numerically as MM-DD-YY. If the date of birth is not obtained after a reasonable effort, leave this field blank.
3.1.12.8  Item 15 - Patient’s Sex Required
Show an “M” for male or an “F” for female.
3.1.12.9  Item 17 - Admission Date Required
Enter the admission date, which shall be the same date as the effective date of the hospice election, or change of election. The date of admission shall not precede the physician’s certification by more than two days. Show the month, day, and year numerically as MM-DD-YY.
3.1.12.10  Item 22 - Patient Status Required
This code indicates the patient’s status as of the “Through” date of the billing period (Item 6).
Code Structure
01
Discharged (left this hospice)
30
Still patient (remains a patient)
40
Died at home
41
Died in a medical facility, such as a hospital, Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF), or freestanding hospice
42
Place of death unknown
3.1.12.11  Item 32, 33, 34, and 35 - Occurrence Codes and Dates
Show code(s) and associated date(s) defining specific event(s) relating to this billing period. Event codes are two numeric digits and dates are six numeric digits (MM-DD-YY). If there are more occurrences than there are spaces on the form, use Item 36 (occurrence span) or Item 84 (remarks) to record additional occurrences and dates. Use the following occurrence codes where appropriate:
Code
Title
Definition
24
Date Insurance Denied
This code indicates the date you received the denial of coverage from an insurer other than the TRICARE Program.
42
Termination of Hospice Care
The date the patient’s hospice care ends. Care may be terminated by a change in the hospice election to another hospice, a revocation of the hospice election, or death.
Show the termination code 42 in Item 32.
3.1.12.12  Item 38 - Transferring Hospice ID Required
3.1.12.12.1  Only when the admission is for a patient who has changed an election from one hospice to another.
3.1.12.12.2  When a receiving (second) hospice submits an admission notice involving a patient who changed the hospice election, this item reflects the transferring hospice’s complete name, address, and provider number. This information alerts the contractor that the admission continues a current hospice benefit period rather than begins a new one.
3.1.12.13  Items 39, 40, and 41 - Value Codes and Amounts
The only value codes that apply to hospice benefits are those that indicate TRICARE payment is secondary to another payer. Enter the appropriate code(s) and related dollar amount(s) where the primary payer is other than the TRICARE Program, and where the primary payer has made payment at the time of billing the TRICARE Program. If the primary payer has denied payment, indicate this with zeros in the value amount. Enter the date of the denial and occurrence code 24 in the appropriate field. The value codes are two numeric digits, and each value allows up to eight numeric digits (000000.00). If more than one value code is shown for a billing period, show codes in ascending numeric sequence. There are four lines of data: a, b, c, and d. Use Items 39a through 41a before Items 39b through 41b (i.e., the first line is used up before the second line is used).
Code
Title
Definition
12
Working Age/Beneficiary/Spouse with Employer Group Health Plan (EGHP)
This code indicates the amount shown in that portion of a higher priority EGHP payment that you are applying to covered TRICARE charges on this bill.
13
End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) in the 12-month coordination period with an EGHP
This code indicates the amount shown is that portion of a higher priority EGHP payment made on behalf of an ESRD beneficiary that you are applying to covered TRICARE charges on the bill.
14
Automobile, No-Fault or Any Liability Insurance
This code indicates the amount shown is that portion of a higher priority automobile, no-fault or liability insurance payment made on behalf of a TRICARE beneficiary you are applying to covered TRICARE charges on this bill.
15
Worker’s Compensation (WC) including Black Lung (BL)
This code indicates the amount shown is that portion of a higher priority WC insurance payment made on behalf of a TRICARE beneficiary you are applying to covered TRICARE charges on this bill.
16
Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA)/Veterans Health Administration (VHA), Public Health Service (PHS), Other Federal Agency
This code indicates the amount shown is that portion of a higher priority DVA/VHA, PHS, or other Federal Agency’s payment made on behalf of a TRICARE beneficiary that you are applying to covered TRICARE charges on this bill.
3.1.12.14  Item 42 - Revenue Code Required
3.1.12.14.1  Assign a revenue code for each reimbursement rate. Enter the appropriate three digit numeric revenue code on the adjacent line in column 42 to explain each charge in column 43.
Note:  Use revenue code 657 to identify the charges for services furnished to patients by physicians employed by, or receiving compensation from the hospice. In conjunction with revenue code 657, enter the appropriate physician CPT procedure codes in Item 44. CPT procedure codes are required to ensure the contractor makes allowable charge determinations when reimbursing hospice physicians.
3.1.12.14.2  Use these revenue codes to bill the TRICARE Program.
Code
Description
Standard Abbreviation
651
Routine Home Care
RTN Home
652
Continuous Home Care
CTNS Home (a minimum of eight hours, not necessarily consecutive, in a 24-hour period is required. Less than eight hours is routine home care for reimbursement purposes. A portion of an hour is one hour).
655
Inpatient Respite Care
IP Respite
656
General Inpatient Care
GNL IP
657
Physician Services
PHY Ser (shall be accompanied by a physician CPT procedure code)
3.1.12.15  Item 46 - Units of Service Required
Enter the number of units for each type of service on the line adjacent to the revenue code and description. Units are measured in days for codes 651, 655, and 656, in hours for code 652, and in procedures for code 657.
3.1.12.16  Item 47 - Total Charges Required
Enter the total charges for the billing period by revenue code (column 42) on the adjacent line in column 47. The last revenue code entered in column 42 represents the grand total of all charges billed. The total is in column 47 on the adjacent line. Each line allows up to eight numeric digits (000000.00).
3.1.12.17  Item 50A, B, C - Payer Identification Required
If the TRICARE Program is the only insurer other than Medicaid and TRICARE Supplemental Plans, the TRICARE Program is the primary payer. Enter the correct contractor in line 50A. If there are other insurers besides Medicaid and TRICARE supplemental plans, the TRICARE Program is not the primary payer. Enter the name of the group(s) or plan(s) in line 50A or 50A and 50B. Enter the correct contractor in line 50B or 50C.
3.1.12.18  Item 58A, B, C - Insured’s Name Required
If the primary payer(s) is other than the TRICARE Program, enter the name of person(s) carrying other insurance in 58A or 58A and 58B. Enter the sponsor’s name in line 58B or 58C if TRICARE patient as recorded on ID card. If the TRICARE Program is primary, enter the sponsor’s name as recorded on the ID card, in line 58A.
3.1.12.19  Item 60A, B, C - Certificate/Social Security Number (SSN)/Health Insurance Claim/Identification Number
If primary payer(s) is other than the TRICARE Program, enter the unique ID number assigned by the primary payer to the person(s) carrying other insurance in line 60A or 60A & 60B. Enter the sponsor’s SSN in line 60B or 60C if TRICARE patient; or enter the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)/Partnership for Peace (PfP) in line 60B or 60C if a NATO/PfP beneficiary.
3.1.12.20  Item 67 - Principal Diagnosis Code Required
For services provided before the mandated date, as directed by Health and Human Services (HHS), for International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM) implementation, show the full International Classification of Diseases, 9th Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) diagnosis code. For services provided on or after the mandated date, as directed by HHS, for ICD-10-CM implementation, show the full ICD-10-CM diagnosis code. The principal diagnosis is defined as the condition established after study to be chiefly responsible for occasioning the patient’s admission.
3.1.12.21  Item 82 - Attending Physician ID Required
Enter the name, number and address of the licensed physician normally expected to certify and recertify the medical necessity of the services rendered or who has primary responsibility for the patient’s medical care and treatment. Use Item 84 “Remarks” for additional space for recording this information.
3.1.12.22  Item 78 - Other Physician ID Required
Enter the word “employee” or “nonemployee” to describe the relationship that the patient’s attending physician has with the hospice program.
3.1.12.23  Item 80 - Remarks
Enter any remarks needed to provide information not shown elsewhere on the bill but which are necessary for proper payment.
3.1.12.24  Items 85 and 86 - Provider Representative Signature and Date
Deleted from UB-04, see Form Locator (FL) 45, line 23. A hospice representative shall ensure the required physician’s certification and a signed election statement are in the records before submitting the CMS 1450 UB-04.
3.1.13  Special Processing and Reporting Requirements
3.1.13.1  The various levels of hospice care are considered institutional care for payment and reporting purposes. The special rate code “P” (TRICARE Systems Manual (TSM), Chapter 2, Section 2.8) is designated for the four levels of hospice care.
3.1.13.2  The conventional coding for hospice care on the CMS 1450 UB-04, Item 4, is a four digit numerical code designating the TOB required.
3.1.13.2.1  For institutional reporting purposes the first two digits are converted to the appropriate TYPE OF INSTITUTION code provided in the TSM, Chapter 2, Addendum D. Code 81 is converted to 78 (non-hospital based hospice) and code 82 is converted to 79 (hospital-based hospice).
3.1.13.2.2  The third digit is reported on a separate institutional reporting field (FREQUENCY CODE), TSM, Chapter 2, Section 2.5.
3.1.13.3  Type of institution codes 78 and 79 along with the special processing code # (TSM, Chapter 2, Addendum D) allow hospice institutional claims to by-pass all cost-sharing edits.
3.1.13.4  The revenue code 0657 is used to identify the charges for services furnished to patients by physicians employed by, or receiving compensation from the hospice.
3.1.13.4.1  Physician procedure codes (CPT procedure codes) are entered in Item 44 of the CMS 1450 UB-04 to the right of the revenue code 0657 (Item 42). The CPT procedure codes are required in order that the contractor shall make allowable charge (CMAC) determinations when reimbursing hospice physicians.
3.1.13.4.2  Hospice professional services are paid at 100 percent of the allowed charge.
3.1.13.4.3  Place of service code 34 (TSM, Chapter 2, Section 2.7) along with the special processing code number allows hospice non-institutional claims (hospice physician charges) to by-pass all cost-sharing edits and to be paid at 100 percent of the CHAMPUS Maximum Allowable Charge (CMAC).
3.1.13.5  Institutional services (i.e., routine home care-651, continuous home care-652, inpatient respite care-655, and general inpatient care-656) are reported on an institutional claim format while hospice physician services (revenue code 657 and accompanying CPT procedure codes) are reported on a non-institutional claim format. The claim is split for reporting purposes.
3.1.13.6  Patient care services rendered by an independent attending physician or NP (physician or NP who is not considered employed by, or under contract with the hospice) are not considered a part of the hospice benefit, and as such, are billed in the provider’s own right.
3.1.13.6.1  Independent attending physician or NP services are subject to standard TRICARE allowable charge methodology (i.e., subject to standard deductible and cost-sharing provisions).
3.1.13.6.2  The physician specialty code (TSM, Chapter 2, Addendum C) is reported on the TRICARE Encounter Data (TED) records.
3.1.14  Billing for Covered TRICARE Services Unrelated to Hospice Care
3.1.14.1  Any covered TRICARE services not related to the treatment of the terminal condition for which hospice care was elected, which are provided during a hospice period, are billed to the contractor for non-hospice reimbursement.
3.1.14.2  The provider shall bill non-hospice services in accordance with existing claims processing procedures under the TRICARE Program.
3.1.14.3  The contractor shall identify and review all inpatient claims for beneficiaries who have elected hospice care to ensure:
•  Non-related hospital admissions, nonhospice TRICARE coverage is provided to a beneficiary only when hospitalization was for a condition not related to the beneficiary’s terminal illness; and
•  Conditions related to a beneficiary’s terminal illness, the claims were denied.
Note:  Many illnesses may occur when an individual is terminally ill which are brought on by the underlying condition of the patient (e.g., it is not unusual for a terminally ill patient to develop pneumonia or some other illness as a result of the beneficiary’s weakened condition). Similarly, the setting of bones after fractures occur in a bone cancer patient are treatment of a related condition. The treatment of these related conditions is part of the overall hospice benefit, and as such, are not billed as a non-hospice TRICARE claim, except for services of an attending physician who is not employed by, or under contract with, the hospice program.
3.1.14.4  Effective December 12, 2017, the contractor shall no longer review all inpatient claims for beneficiaries under the age of 21 electing hospice care since coverage and reimbursement is being extended for treatment related to the terminal illness under concurrent care. The contractor shall reimburse these Basic Program services in addition to the non-hospice reimbursement currently available for direct patient care services rendered by either an independent attending physician or physician employed by or under contract with a hospice and for treatment of non-related conditions.
3.1.15  Frequency of Hospice Billing
While inpatient billing is generally deferred until discharge, hospice programs shall bill patient stays requiring longer than 30 days in 30-day intervals. This requirement applies to both the institutional and hospice-based physician claims.
3.1.16  Updated Hospice Rates
•  Use the rates in Addendum A (FY 2022) for payment of claims for services rendered on or after October 1, 2021, through September 30, 2022. The hospice cap amount applies to the cap year ending October 31, 2021.
•  The rates in Addendum A (FY 2023) shall be used for payment of claims for services rendered on or after October 1, 2022, through September 30, 2023. The hospice cap amount applies to the cap year ending October 31, 2022.
•  The rates in Addendum A (FY 2024) shall be used for payment of claims for services rendered on or after October 1, 2023, through September 30, 2024. The hospice cap amount applies to the cap year ending October 31, 2023.
3.2  Beneficiary Cost-Sharing
There are no deductibles under the hospice benefit. The TRICARE Program pays the full cost of all covered services for the terminal illness, except for small cost-share amounts which may be collected by the individual hospice for outpatient drugs and biologicals and inpatient respite care.
Note:  The collection of cost-share amounts is optional under the hospice program.
3.2.1  The patient is responsible for five percent of the cost of outpatient drugs, or $5 toward each prescription, whichever is less. Additionally, the cost of prescription drugs (drugs or biologicals) may not exceed that which a prudent buyer would pay in similar circumstances; that is, a buyer who refuses to pay more than the going price for an item or service and also seeks to economize by minimizing costs.
3.2.2  For inpatient respite care, the cost-share for each respite care day is equal to five percent of the amount the TRICARE Program has estimated to be the cost of respite care, after adjusting the national rate for local wage differences.
3.2.3  The cost-sharing provisions established under paragraph 3.2 are applicable to all beneficiaries regardless of the sponsor’s status (active duty or retired).
3.2.4  Hospice cost-sharing is not subject to the catastrophic cap provisions since it is optional and already offset in the established national rates.
3.2.5  The amount of the individual cost-share liability for respite care during a hospice cost-share period shall not exceed the Medicare inpatient hospital deductible applicable for the year in which the hospice cost-share period began. The individual hospice cost-share period begins on the first day an election is in effect for the beneficiary and ends with the close of the first period of 14 consecutive days on each of which an election is not in effect for the beneficiary.
Example:  Mr. Brown elected an initial 90-day period of hospice care. Five days after the initial period of hospice care ended, Mr. Brown began another period of hospice care under a subsequent election. Immediately after that period ended, he began a third period of hospice care. Since these election periods were not separated by 14 consecutive days, they constitute a single hospice cost-share period. Therefore, the maximum cost-share for respite care during the three periods of hospice care shall not exceed the amount of the inpatient deductible for the year in which the first period began.
3.2.6  The TRICARE payment rates are not reduced when the individual is liable for coinsurance payments. Instead, when establishing the payment rates, the TRICARE Program offsets the estimated cost of services by an estimate of average coinsurance amounts hospices collect.
Note:  Since the services and supplies associated with the palliative treatment of beneficiaries electing hospice care under the TRICARE Program are included in the all-inclusive rates and the rates are already reduced/offset by the estimated average cost-sharing, the contractor shall not monitor whether or not the hospice has waived cost-sharing for a particular service. The cost-sharing calculation is not a part of the reimbursement methodology for payment of hospice claims.
3.2.7  Since TRICARE payment rates are not reduced when beneficiary liability is reported by the hospice (i.e., when the provider indicates that a cost-share was collected from the beneficiary), the following guidelines are applied when beneficiary cost-sharing is reported on the hospice claim form:
•  List a cost-share amount of $0.00 on TRICARE Explanation of Benefits (TEOB) for all services;
•  Do not retain a history of any cost-share payments reported on the claim form by the hospice; and
•  Do not apply any amount of the reported cost-share to the catastrophic cap.
3.3  Medical Review of Hospice Claims
The contractor shall request and review medical records (post-payment medical review), including written plans of care, to make sure that appropriate payments are made for services provided to individuals electing hospice care.
3.3.1  Criteria for Review
The post-payment medical review process shall ensure that services provided were:
•  Covered hospice services;
•  Stipulated in the written plan of care;
•  Necessary for the application or management of the beneficiary’s terminal illness; and
•  Appropriately classified for payment.
3.3.2  Time Frame for Receipt of Medical Records
The hospice program shall submit all medical records and documentation within 30 days of the date the contractor requests them. Failure to receive the requested information within the designated time frame (30 days from date of request) shall result in the denial of all related claims. The hospice is liable for the costs of the noncovered services. The hospice shall not attempt to collect any amounts for services for which the beneficiary was entitled to have TRICARE payment made had the hospice complied with certain procedural requirements (e.g., requested information for post-payment medical review, refer to Chapter 11, Addendum D, Article 3.4 of the Participation Agreement for Hospice Program Services for TRICARE Beneficiaries).
Note:  The contractor processing the claims shall conduct a medical review. The contractor shall only look for utilization trends on random samples. A pattern of failure to adequately meet the medical review criteria specified in paragraph 3.3, shall result in denial or reclassification of the particular rate category. The notice of denial or reclassification of the hospice care is retrospective (post payment) and result in a claim adjustment (recoupment action). The contractor shall send a duplicate claim adjustment (EOB) to both the provider and the beneficiary. The beneficiary is held harmless for those services for which the provider is entitled to have TRICARE payment made had the provider complied with certain procedural requirements (refer to Chapter 11, Addendum D, Article 3.4, of the Participation Agreement for Hospice Program Services TRICARE Beneficiaries). The contractor has discretion in determining at what point care is denied for lack of supporting medical documentation.
3.3.3  Reclassification of Level of Care
The contractor shall reclassify care from one rate category to another as a result of their review. The contractor shall adjust the reimbursement on the previously processed claims to the appropriate level of care.
Example:  If continuous home care was provided to a patient whose condition did not require the level of care described in paragraph 3.1.1.5, payment will be made at the appropriate level (in this case, the RHC rate.)
3.3.4  Related Services
All services and supplies associated with the palliative care of the terminal patient are included within the hospice rate with the exception of hands on physician services (both hospice based and independent attending physicians).
3.3.4.1  The hospice shall provide medical appliances (which includes covered Durable Equipment (DE) and Durable Medical Equipment (DME) (e.g., hospital bed, wheelchair) as well as other self-help and personal comfort items related to the palliation or management of the patient’s terminal illness) for use in the patient’s home while the patient is under hospice care. The use of this equipment is included in the daily hospice rate.
3.3.4.2  Parental and enteral nutrition therapies are covered under the daily hospice rate when determined to be essential for the palliative care of the terminal patient; however, these types of therapies are relatively rare in a hospice setting since they are considered life sustaining treatment modalities.
3.3.4.3  Ambulance services are covered under the daily hospice rate when determined necessary for management of the patient’s terminal illness (e.g., ambulance transport from the patient’s residence to a hospice inpatient facility).
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