Wednesday, April 28, 2021

NHPCO Surveys Membership on Medical Group Practice

In April 2021, NHPCO conducted a survey of its membership to learn more about the use of medical group practices among these hospice providers and interest in developing such a service. Hospice organizations already invest in medical providers, including physicians and nurse practitioners, as members of their interdisciplinary team, so there could be opportunity for hospices to build out a medical group practice.

Health care organizations that have a medical group practice are at an advantage when it comes to participating in new care models. Creating a medical group practice is also the fastest way to build a palliative care program and secure reimbursement through Medicare B billing.  

Nearly 20 percent of NHPCO’s provider members responded. This reflects the feedback of 230 hospices from among the organization’s 1,200 provider members.

Among the survey findings:

·         27 percent of respondents reported that they have a medical practice group as part of their services.

·         26 percent of respondents indicated an interest in developing this service. 

·         Approximately 50 percent of the members with an existing medical group reside within a geographic location that is eligible to participate in the Primary Care First model. 

·         66 percent of respondents provide palliative care services; however, currently only 9 percent offer primary care services.

·         38 percent of respondents provide certified home health care.

·         25 percent provide other services such as assisted living, long term care, private duty care, home infusion, PACE, and pediatric concurrent care. 

An overwhelming majority of respondents are interested in participating in focus groups to assist NHPCO in building out resources to help others build and sustain medical practice groups.

“One of the things we are helping hospice providers understand is the range of opportunities that exist among the various models being offered or developed by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation,” said NHPCO Vice President for Palliative and Advanced Care Lori Bishop. “The skills of the Interdisciplinary Team and the expertise that hospice professionals have in care management can be of great value to organizations that are part of Direct Contracting or Primary Care First models.”

NHPCO members will find additional information on some of these models on the Models and Demos page of the NHPCO website.

Monday, April 19, 2021

NHPCO Issues Proclamation Honoring Hospice Volunteers During National Volunteer Week, April 18 – 24, 2021

Volunteers are the Heart of Hospice

In recognition of National Volunteer Week, the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) has issued the following proclamation to celebrate the contributions and gifts of America’s dedicated hospice volunteers. And even during this past year, when the pandemic altered so many practices, hospice volunteers remained active making masks and gift baskets, helping with outreach and fundraisers, and doing what they could within safety guidelines to let patients and families know that they were being thought of and cared for.

“Hospice volunteers play an indispensable role in enabling hospice and palliative care organizations to offer the highest-quality care and support possible for the people they serve. By sharing their time, energy, and expertise, volunteers bring compassion and caring to the lives of those in need,” said NHPCO President and CEO Edo Banach.

NHPCO National Volunteer Week Proclamation

Whereas, volunteering is an important activity for millions of Americans throughout the U.S., the compassionate individuals who serve as trained hospice volunteers deserve special recognition during this week of celebration and awareness;

Whereas, these dedicated hospice volunteers give of their time and talent in support of patients and families who are our relatives, friends, and neighbors;

Whereas, these volunteers are essential members of hospice and palliative care teams that care for an estimated 1.55 million hospice patients every year and ensure that they live with hope, dignity, and love despite serious and life-limiting illness;

Whereas, hospice volunteers contribute in creative ways to support health care workers as well as patients and families during this time of a global pandemic;  

Whereas, National Volunteer Week provides the opportunity to recognize the contributions of these caring hospice volunteers and raise awareness of the benefits of hospice and palliative care;

Now, therefore, be it resolved that the NHPCO board of directors do hereby proclaim April 18 – 24, 2021 as National Volunteer Week across the U.S. and encourage the support and participation of all citizens in learning more about and participating in the provision of hospice and palliative care to those in our community.

National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
Board of Directors
April 19, 2021

# # #

NHPCO Volunteer Awards

NHPCO presented the 2020 Volunteers are the Foundation of Hospice Awards during its Virtual Interdisciplinary Conference, October 2020. Watch a video of the awards presentation honoring the 2020 volunteer honorees.

NHPCO members are encouraged to submit a nomination for a star volunteer for the 2021 awards that will be presented during the Interdisciplinary Conference scheduled for September 20 – 22, 2021. Deadline for submitting nominations is April 30. NHPCO members will find more information online.

Learn more about volunteering for a hospice in your community by reaching out to a local hospice provider. NHPCO’s Find a Provider online tool will help you find a provider in your area.