Education Sessions

Lessons From the Industry’s Best

We’ve assembled a collection of innovative, informed, and engaging faculty with expertise vital to the professional growth of home care, hospice, and private duty organizations. These industry leaders have extensive and diverse perspectives on a variety of aspects of care delivery in the home health and hospice settings. Learn from the best and brightest in the industry and connect with them through our interactive platform, without the need to leave your home or office. The best part is you can access the sessions on-demand and as often as you’d like after the conference.

For information on earning Continuing Education credit, click here.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2020  |  1:30-2:30PM ET

Home Health Revenue Cycle: PDGM & COVID-19 

How has PDGM affected the Revenue Cycle of home health? What is billable and non-billable in today’s COVID-19 Pandemic World? Does your physician and NPP telehealth F2F encounter contribute to your patient eligibility for HH? These and many other questions will be answered in this information-packed session. In this session, providers will learn why it’s so important to understand the billing flexibilities that were afforded to Medicare providers to ensure cash flow doesn’t stop. If one, or more, of these billing parts are missing or are incorrect, agencies set themselves up for denials, ADRs and a host of other billing dilemmas that we’d all rather avoid. Participants will walk away with a much clearer understanding of Medicare billing tips and we will end the session with ample time for question and answer period. 

  • Melinda Gaboury COS-C, Chief Executive Officer, Healthcare Provider Solutions, Inc. 

Hospice Policy Updates: Survey Reforms and the Medicare Advantage-Hospice Demonstration Model 

Over recent years, the hospice benefit has been undergoing dramatic change.  Given important policy initiatives under development, that trend is likely to continue.  In January 2021, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will launch an MA-VBID-Hospice demonstration that will test coverage of hospice care under the Medicare Advantage benefits package. In other activity, findings from last year’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) reports exploring hospice survey performance have set the Congress in motion developing legislative reforms for the hospice survey process to ensure greater transparency and tighten enforcement.  This session will provide updates on these two important policy developments, as well as insights into the implications they may have for the practice of hospice over the coming years.     

  • Theresa Forster BA, Vice President for Hospice Policy & Programs, National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) 

How Technology Can Drive Continuity of Care to Improve Patient and Clinician Health 

Even before the coronavirus pandemic, the post-acute industry was at an inflection point: we are facing a historic influx of patients in need of our services, yet we are pushed to operate under regulations that chip away at margins and compete for staff who are being lured away by companies who can pay more with far less risk to personal health. With the pandemic, post-acute operators have had to quickly pivot to making their administrative staff remote and delivering care through telehealth platforms that won’t likely be compensated. And with interoperability still not fully-fledged, our patients – and clinical employees – still face extreme risk as patients transition from one care setting to the next. This session will explore how technology can be a significant part of the solution in these extraordinary times. When properly purchased and deployed, tech can keep our patients safer and healthier, our staff more engaged and satisfied, and our bottom lines less at risk. 

  • Cindy Campbell MHA- Healthcare Informatics, RN, BSN, COQS, Director, Operational Consulting, Wellsky 
  • Craig Mandeville, Founder & CEO, Forcura 
  • Kate Warnock, Director, Communications & Brand Strategy, Forcura 
  • Robert Rosati PhD, Chair, Connected Health Institute and VP of Quality and Research, VNA Health Group, Visiting Nurse Association Health Group (Corporate) 

Clinical Documentation Can Make or Break Your Bottom Line 

Your primary focus is providing excellent care for your patients and their families. Your OTHER primary focus is having a business that is financially stable. The words “payroll” and “panic” shouldn’t be synonymous. Let’s dive into the ways your clinicians’ documentation makes you financially successful. We will talk details – what is the best way to document what you saw? How do you document the details you usually don’t notice – but are right in front of you? What is the best way to capture everything you are seeing? AND document it quickly and efficiently? This will allow your clinicians to see more patients, instead of spending so much time on documentation. Clinicians are frustrated with documentation. This is frequently the cause for high turnover rates, which are expensive! Once your documentation is exceptional, your denials and non-affirmations will be drastically minimized. We will work together to make your business the best it can be and ease those financial frustrations! 

  • Sandy Decker RN BSN, Vice President Home Health Clinical and Regulatory Affairs, AHHC-NC 

How to Marry Clinical and Operational Excellence for Organizational Success 

There is no question it takes a team effort to successfully run a home care agency. The two key components are the clinical team and operational team, each of which have very different roles and measures of success. This presentation will explain how aligning clinical and operational excellence in the office creates a win-win-win situation for both teams and ultimately for patient outcomes and satisfaction. Attendees will learn how clinical and operational teams can work together to grow the agency financially, allowing it to serve more patients and families. 

  • Brian Nelson, Product Manager, Axxess 
  • Lisa Malone RN, Product Manager, Axxess 

MONDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2020 | 3:30PM-4:30PM ET

VNA 2.020: Journey to PDGM and Beyond 

As a very large agency with wide-spread territory, the implications of the PDGM imperative led to a de-centralization of our care management. The self-contained PODs we developed were designed with all care management in mind; including tasks previously managed in A/R, UR/QI, and Scheduling. New roles to support Clinical Managers were designed, as well as guidelines for field staff to utilize in collaboration with the team manager with regard to care management in general. In the making of the new (thus 2.020) organization we also kept our Value-Based imperatives in place and strived to maintain or improve upon our 4.5 Star rating. We have been incorporating Triple Aim concepts since the inception of the ACA, the skill sets implied were a definite plus as we worked to roll-out these latest changes. In many ways developing skill sets to align with the Triple Aim concepts will continue to provide us with the tools we need to succeed in PDGM – and beyond. 

  • Ann-Marie Peckham RN, MS, MBA, President/CEO, VNA of Cape Cod, Inc. 
  • Susan Donovan RN, BSN, CHPN, Director of Patient Care Transitions, VNA of Cape Cod 

Design Thinking for QAPI: Apply Innovative Thinking to Jumpstart Your Quality Program 

In this interactive session, participants will learn about design thinking methodology to reframe problems and challenges into opportunities through empathy. Participants will learn about design thinking for process improvement and elevating satisfaction scores. Knowledge Gaps: Move quality beyond firefighting and into an organizational way of thinking that engages staff and solves problems right the first time. Draws upon best practices of design thinking as applied in acute care and manufacturing settings. Innovative: A best practice from Silicon Valley startups, design thinking is sweeping the globe and changing the model in acute care settings, elevating quality, engaging staff, and improving patient experience. Strategic Impact: Design thinking principles effortlessly align strategy with execution, a key challenge many organizations struggle with as they move from planning to implementation 

  • Mardy Maki, Chief Strategy Officer, Transcend Strategy Group 
  • Stephanie Johnston MBA, President & Chief Executive Officer, Transcend Strategy Group 

Conditions of Participation: Practical Applications 

This year has been one of the most challenging year in modern history. Guidance has been temporarily and permanently changed due to COVID19 in the United States. Some of those changes are welcome. Keep your agency compliant when it comes to surveys! We will have an interactive discussion on how your Conditions of Participation have changed (including emergency preparedness), and practical applications to ensure you meet the guidance. Understand what the current guidance is, and what guidance was temporary under the CARES act. 

  • J’non Griffin, RN, MHA, HCS-D, HCS-C, HCS-H, COS-C, President, Home Health Solutions, LLC 

Where Can Home Health Agencies and Medicare Advantage Plans Align within PDGM? 

Alignment between home health agencies and Medicare Advantage plans is crucial as the volume of patient population expands. This session covers the current landscape of MA within home health, where the industry is headed and predictions for future trends. Attendees will gain a greater understanding of how home health agencies can prove their value to help move MA plans to closer align, and how they can position themselves as a pre-acute solution for the MA insurers. Attendees will also understand how a unified PAC model may impact MA plans as it relates to PDGM. 

  • Jeff Aaronson, Director – Advisory Consulting, McBee 
  • Stavros Katsifis, Consulting Manager, McBee 

A Survey of the Changing Legal Landscape in Home Care Employment Law & Regulations 

Receive a high-level overview of the newest laws, rulings and legal trends in the home care industry. Learn best practices and how to comply with legal changes from throughout 2020 while still running a successful home care business. They will also discuss industry-specific employment practices most likely to result in new lawsuits and the best practices to prevent the same. Topics will include the proper structuring of live-in and on-call pay practices, personal cell phone use for timekeeping, fluctuation of caregiver pay rates and other hot button issues affecting the industry. 

  • Angelo Spinola Esq., Attorney and Shareholder, Littler 

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 20, 2020 | 1:30PM-2:30PM ET

Education Sessions

Choose from these five sessions:

How an Effective Clinical Episode Management Program Can Help Your Agency Become a Frontrunner in PDGM 

A strong clinical episode management program is crucial to ensure efficient, cost-effective, and uncompromised quality care delivery under PDGM. Effective clinical episode management is dependent upon the interdisciplinary team working together in a collaborative manner with communication being key! In this session, we will identify, define and drill down steps for the development of an effective clinical episode management program that will meet individual patient needs while increasing agency outcomes, leading to your agency becoming a frontrunner in PDGM! 

  • Sharon Litwin, RN, BSHS, MHA, HCS-D, Senior Managing Partner, 5 Star Consultants, LLC 
  • Sheryl Bellinger, RN, CHCA, President, Professional Home Health Care, Inc. 

Regulatory Roundup 

This session will review current CMS regulations and policies that are of greatest concern to home health agencies. Topics include HH PPS rate update proposed rule, home infusion therapy supplier benefit, medical review, and regulatory flexibilities related to the PHE. 

  • Mary Carr, RN, MPH, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) 

Home Health Revenue Cycle: Managing the Impacts of PDGM and COVID-19 

2020 has been a year of unprecedented challenges for HHAs with PDGM followed by the COVID-19 public health emergency, both of which have significantly impacted the revenue cycle and resulting cash flow. This session will offer participants insights on strategies for successfully managing the impact of PDGM, COVID-19, and whatever else the year has in store for HHAs. This session would offer strategies for addressing top PDGM issues impacting the revenue cycle, such as intake data collection and physician order management, and identifying the root cause of swings in revenues resulting in irregular cash flow. It would also focus on COVID-19 issues, which continue to evolve. While RCD and TPE are currently paused due to COVID-19, updates will be provided on the most common issues resulting in denials and strategies to avoid such. Revenue cycle KPIs and example dashboard management tools will also be shared during this session. I am open to doing this session with a co-speaker. 

  • M. Aaron Little, CPA, Managing Director, BKD LLP 

Improving Staff Satisfaction and Retention: 10 Key Elements to Consider for Success 

The labor shortage is perhaps the largest threat to the home care industry today. in the U.S. alone, by 2026 the industry will need roughly 1.3 million hh aides and 2.7 million personal care aides. More LTC workers leave the field than enter it. In 2030, the U.S. is predicted to have a shortage of 151,000 paid direct care workers. By 2040, the shortage will grow to 355,000. 60% of private home care agencies identify care provider shortages as one of the top three threats to the future growth of their businesses. -visible and accessible leadership; access to resources and support; teamwork in the continuum of care; quality safe ethical care provision; streamlining workflow; autonomy and service recovery; organizational structure; continuous quality improvement and learning; alignment of values and selection of the right technologies. These key changes will all contribute to employee productivity and satisfaction, which in turn improves the agency’s recruitment and retention. 

  • Cheryl Reid-Haughian, RN, BHScN, MHScN, CCHN ( C ), VP, Clinical Informatics, CellTrak Technologies Inc 
  • Shelena Healy, BSN, RN, Paraprofessional Team Leader, Visiting Nurse Assoc of Cape Cod 

Private Duty: Positioning as a Key Partner in Effective Population Health Management 

Private duty agencies hold a unique opportunity to add value to providers and payers who manage healthcare lives over time. Population health, value-based payment initiatives and Medicare Advantage all recognize the cost-savings achieved when health-related social needs are identified and met. Private duty providers hold a key place in this network of support, helping to meet aspects of social determinants of health while supporting best-practice chronic disease management. Innovative providers are re-tooling and re-positioning services, embracing virtual care platforms and telehealth to create a blend of practical services and technology which connect support to need. Private Duty holds the opportunity to reposition their work within the broader payer/provider network, delivering on improving outcomes and lowering the costs of care, where people live. This value proposition will be described, allowing attendees to expand their view of the power of private duty in today’s market. 

  • Cindy Campbell, MHA- Healthcare Informatics, RN, BSN, COQS, Director, Operational Consulting, Wellsky 
  • Dr. Lucy Andrews, DNP, MS, BSN, RN, President & CEO, At Your Service Nursing and Home Care 
  • Melanie Stover, OT, MBA, MS ISM, Owner, Home Care Sales 

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 20, 2020 | 3:30PM-4:30PM ET

Influencing Up, Down & Across Your Organization

Are you a person of influence? Do your colleagues and employees listen when you talk? Can you quickly assess a situation and adapt your message to accomplish your goals? Do you know how to authentically motivate, inspire, and lead others? This presentation will teach you how to thrive and succeed within your organization utilizing the 3 C’s of Leadership: communication, cooperation, and collaboration. No matter what you’re trying to accomplish up, down, and across your organization – there are three qualities required of leaders: the ability to influence others, the ability to communicate effectively, and the ability to cultivate healthy workplace relationships. In this engaging presentation, Dr. Jermaine Davis will share his latest research on how leaders and frontline employees can use the principles and practices of Influential Leadership to achieve success.

  • Jermaine Davis, PhD, Dr. Jermaine M. Davis, Seminars & Workshops, Inc.

Modified Hospice Election Statement and NEW Patient Notification of Hospice Non-covered Items, Services and Drugs 

On October 1, 2020, hospices implemented a modified election statement and a new election statement addendum, the Patient Notification of Hospice Non-covered Items, Services, and Drugs.  These new requirements brought many questions regarding the forms as well as the Immediate Advocacy process administered by the BFCC-QIO.  This session will review the requirements of the election statement and addendum and a summary of the Immediate Advocacy process and will share what some providers are doing to comply.  We will then address frequently asked questions and the latest information available from CMS and the Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs). 

  • Katie Wehri, Director, Home Care & Hospice Regulatory Affairs, National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) 

Beyond Your Dashboard: Using Data to Drive Operational Change 

Many agencies today operate in a data divide–leaders and managers have their hands full of reports, but struggle with actually using the analytics in order to make changes and achieve goals in their organization. Using data to drive operational change doesn’t require an informatics degree, but does require intention, a plan, some guidelines, and practice. You bring the intention, we’ll provide you with a framework and considerations to take back home and put into practice. We’ll focus on the financial metrics that provide insight into the factors tied most closely to success in maintaining margins and cash flow–payer mix, drivers of direct cost, overhead decisions, and efficiency indicators. We will provide guidance on developing your own reporting priorities, interpreting results, and translating observations into action. 

  • Christine Lang MBA, Director, Data Consulting, Simione Healthcare Consultants 
  • Robert Simione CPA, Director of Finance, Simione Healthcare Consultants 

Use Technology and Innovation to Drive Quality and Compliance 

Apply the use of technology and innovation to drive quality and compliance in an agency. Pre-pandemic, driving quality and compliance for a remote workforce was challenging and this became even more concerning during the pandemic. With the constant revisions of policies and procedures all while trying to maintain or improve your established QAPI during the pandemic, innovating with technology and creating strategic communication plans was the key to keeping up with a solid quality and compliance program. Post-pandemic, focusing on your quality initiatives will not waiver. Learn how to pivot your quality program with proven techniques presented by a quality nurse who manages a team across three states pre and post-pandemic. 

  • Melissa Gordon RN, BSN, MBA, Executive Director of Clinical Optimization, Prospect Home Health and Hospice 

Understanding Your Corporate Culture and Moving It Into a True Learning Organization for Positive Clinical, Operational, and Financial Outcomes 

A look at the industry in the last several years has meant payment reform, changes to conditions of participation, emergency preparedness, and a pandemic. In all of this, agencies are just trying to keep up while staying financially and clinically viable. In the mix, corporate culture can easily get lost. In this session we will look at corporate culture reform, the steps of becoming a learning organization and how to implement successful group thinking and problem-solving. Mastery of the concepts has proven to produce positive outcomes for those who embrace it. 

  • Shelly Barrett MBA, BSN, RN, ET, CWCN, LMT, Senior Consultant, S&R Barrett, LLC, and Kenyon Homecare Consulting 
  • Virginia (Ginny) Kenyon BSN, MSN, Founder and CEO, Kenyon HomeCare Consulting 


Negotiating for Success: Key Strategies for Favorable Payer Contracts 

As the transition of patients from the acute-care setting to community-based providers happens more quickly, achieving successful payer-provider relationships is increasingly important for home health and hospice providers as they negotiate contracts. The increasingly thin margins in Medicare reimbursement and the continued transition from fee-for-service to Medicare Advantage pressures providers to be cognizant of all contracts and relationships. Negotiating the best payer contract terms requires a significant amount of preparation, negotiation strategies, and resources. This session will examine fee schedule amendments, lesser of billed charges vs. contracted rates, term and termination without cause, claims payments, timely billing requirements and retrospective reviews to prepare providers for negotiating the best payer contract terms possible. 

  • Michael Puskarich MBA, Consulting Director, McBee 

They’re Not Handoffs, They’re Patients

Creating value in home-based care requires that providers get patients within a system to appropriate levels and settings of care as their needs change. Reducing hospitalizations and other cross-setting measures require home care and hospice providers to adopt consistent policies, practices, and communication strategies to ensure the patient is transitioned to the right level of care at the right time.  

  • Christina Andrews, Senior Manager, Growth Solutions, Simione Healthcare Consultants, LLC
  • Julia Maroney, Managing Director, Clinical Operations Consulting, Simione Healthcare Consultants

Review Choice Demonstration (RCD): Lessons Learned and Best Practice 

Have you been looking for information on what has been learned from the current RCD states and what practices will keep you compliant? Are you feeling overwhelmed by the list of requirements and where to begin? Don’t worry! This presentation will provide you with an overview of what has, or has not, worked for agencies under Review Choice Demonstration and then identify a best practice approach that you can implement immediately that will set your agency up for success! 

  • Kimberly Searcy Gunter BSN, MSN, RN, CDI-P, HCS-D, HCS-O, Director HH/Hospice Documentation Improvement, Corridor 

Live Your Mission, Value Employees, and Win the Culture Game 

Cultivating an Innovative Work Culture and Climate that promotes employee development, growth and retention. According to a study in 2018, the average turnover rate in the healthcare industry was 18.2%, the highest recorded turnover in over a decade. The turnover costs for a Healthcare employee ranges from $60,000 to over $1 million. High-turnover not only impacts an organization’s bottom line costs; but more importantly, impacts employee morale and patient care. Patients are not experiencing consistent care because organizations are no longer consistent. Investing in your employees through training and development increases employee retention and engagement. Partnerships with the right higher education institutions can allow employees to receive a quality education at an affordable cost. Knowing and understanding the differences between employee satisfaction and engagement allows leaders to capitalize on the sweet spot. 

  • KK Byland SPHR, SHRM-SCP, Vice President, Human Resources, American College of Education (ACE) 

Private Duty: A Home Health Revenue Diversification Strategy 

The Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) has caused agencies that focus exclusively on Medicare-certified home health to look at business diversification to create additional revenue streams. The disease management aspect of Private Duty care offers a way to increase revenue and cash flow while also improving outcomes and decreasing hospitalization rates. During this session, explore the impact and challenges of PDGM and learn how to build a Private Duty program focused on non-clinical disease management techniques. Private Duty providers will learn how to expand their agency’s value propositions, and to Medicare-certified providers who wish to improve outcomes and gross margins. 

  • Tammy Ross MHA, BSN, RN, CCM, Senior Vice President, Professional Services, Axxess 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 21, 2020 | 3:30PM-4:30PM ET

The New Home Infusion Therapy (HIT) Supplier Benefit 

The 21st Century Cures Act provided for a new benefit that covers the professional services associated with Medicare Part B infusion drugs. The benefit becomes permanent on January 1, 2021, and will have significant implications for the home health agencies that provide Part B  infusion services. This session will review the genesis of the benefit, the Medicare coverage and payment policies, and details related to the billing requirements. 

  • Jennifer Keiser ALM, Information Technology, Sr. Director, Pharmacy Product Management, Brightree LLC 
  • Mary Carr RN, MPH, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) 

Overcoming the 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media 

According to the Pew Research Center, more than 80% of family caregivers are online researching health-related information and care options. In addition to websites, caregivers use social media sites, like Facebook, to find resources and information to help them care for their loved ones. Social media can be a powerful way for home care and hospice providers to engage with patients, families and potential patients. Your presence and activity on social media need to be an extension of your marketing efforts to perpetuate your brand and engage your target audiences. This session will explore seven elements for approaching social media strategically. 

  • Emily Zarecki, Vice President, Account Management, Transcend Strategy Group 
  • Stan Massey, Partner; Lead Consultant, Transcend Strategy Group 

QAPI Made Easy with Free, Redi-Made Tools 

Cure your QAPI headache with tools and guides already developed and awaiting your touch to make them yours. PEPPERs, CASPERs, PUFs and Hospice Compare cost you nothing extra. And using them shows your compliance to surveyors, keeps you out of trouble with payers, and gifts you all the material you need to build your program and your staff. Let’s connect the dots together and mold these seemingly disparate reports into cohesive projects to assure quality and improve performance, er, build your QAPI program. Why re-invent the wheel? These tools will point you toward your agency’s high-risk areas, provide means to track outcomes, and benefit your agency in material ways. Attend this session to start your own QAPI project you can take back and execute at your agency. You’ve got this! 

  • Beth Noyce RN, BSJMC, HCS-C, Hospice and Home Health Consultant, Self- Employed 

The Value of Engaging Caregivers Early in Their Journey 

Supporting caregivers is an opportunity to improve both the experience of care for patients and the economic outcomes for patients and the healthcare institutions serving them. In 2018, North Carolina-based Guiding Lights Caregiver Support Center partnered with Alignment Healthcare, a mission-based Medicare Advantage plan with more than 7,000 members, on a pilot study to examine the impact of caregiver interventions on patient health outcomes and healthcare savings when working with high-risk Medicare recipients. Based on the observed financial and utilization data from this pilot study, there appears to be a significant return on investment for health care agencies and plans providing low-cost, tailored telephonic caregiver support interventions focused on vetted resources and referrals. 

  • Cooper Linton MBA, MSHA, Associate Vice President, Duke HomeCare and Hospice at Duke University Health System 
  • Nicole Clagett, Executive Director, Guiding Lights Caregiver Support Center 

Post-Acute M&A: What’s Going On? 

In 2020, we’ve seen unprecedented upheaval, with PDGM, COVID-19 and CMS’ response to the different market segments. Where are valuations today and why, specifically in home health, home care and hospice? The panel will discuss the impacts of valuation trends, deal flow, operational challenges and pertinent regulatory changes. Our fireside chat format will include experts from industry, strategic buyers, investment bankers, executive leadership all guided by Stoneridge Partners CEO Rich Tinsley. 

  • Brian Bruenderman JD, Partner, Stoneridge Partners 
  • Chris Consalus, Sr. Vice President of Development, BrightSpring Health Services 
  • Rich Tinsley JD, MBA, CPA, CAN, President and CEO, Stoneridge Partners 
  • Tom Lillis, Partner, Stoneridge Partners