Homecare providers could face payment delays in 2020 if they fail to do this.
With less than 30 days to go until the launch of Medicare's new Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM), most home health agencies have full calendars this month -- but there's one task that should head everyone's list, according to Home Health Solutions Owner J'non Griffin.
Home care providers must register no later than Dec. 23 for the updated version of the current Quality Improvement and Evaluation System, which will now be known as iQIES, or face delays in Medicare reimbursement after the first of the year. "If your agency hasn't already done this, make sure you take care of it today," J'non advises. "This is definitely something you don't want to put off."
Assessment submission and reporting functionality will not be available under the upgraded system until Jan. 1, 2020, but registration needs to take place no later than Dec. 23 to make sure there are no problems, she said.
"If an agency does not register, it will find that the assessment data submitted on or after Jan. 1 no longer matches what is in the system, and the assessent will be returned," J'non said.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) says the upgrade will improve the reliability and security of the system.
"The data submission process for agencies won't change, but there is a new user management system and that means all users will have to create an account and establish credentials in HARP, the secure portal used by CMS," she said.
How to register HHAs can find an introduction to iQIES, how to onboard, and what steps are required to initiate a HARP account (along with other helpful information) in the Internet Quality Improvement and Evaluation System (iQIES) Onboarding Guide, which is available here. https://qtso.cms.gov/system/files/qtso/iQIESOnboardingGuide-WebVersion_0.pdf. CMS also offers an iQIES training video, "How to Create an Account", that demonstrates the process. The video is available here. To watch a video detailing the HARP registration process, click here.