AAH resolves to increase participation in HME Audit Key

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Friday, January 6, 2017

WASHINGTON – AAHomecare is taking steps to make participation in its HME Audit Key survey easier in 2017.

The association and Brightree this month will begin beta testing a report that would give providers many of the answers to the “toughest” questions in the survey. It’s in discussions to do the same with Mediware.

“We hope to increase the motivation to participate in 2017,” said Kim Brummett, AAHomecare’s vice president of regulatory affairs.

AAHomecare expects to open its survey to the next round of data submissions—for the fourth quarter of 2016—in mid-January.

The association is also in preliminary discussions with The VGM Group’s complex rehab and O&P divisions to develop “mini-me” surveys specific to those markets.

“We want to gain momentum on rehab and O&P,” Brummett said. “We could have separate reports for each to make them feel like it’s specific to them, but then bring all the data together to say, ‘Here’s the bigger picture.’”

Additionally, AAHomecare has tweaked the survey to allow providers to pick the quarter for which they want to start entering data, instead of requiring them to start at Oct. 1, 2015, the date the survey officially launched.

“As we get further and further from that date, it gets harder and harder for suppliers to quantify the data,” Brummett said. “This also allows us to do more of an apples-to-apples comparison of the data.”

To date, providers with more than 1,500 locations have participated in the survey, Brummett said. She expects that number to rise this year, with audits likely to pick back up in 2017 due to the recent announcement of Performant Recovery as the new national RAC for DME.

“That’s going to put pressure on folks to participate after a relatively quiet 2016,” she said.

With legislation to curb audits a priority for AAHomecare in 2017, the impetus is there to have a robust set of data, Brummett said.

“If we want legislation this year, we need to state our case,” she said.

Data is currency on Capitol Hill, agreed Greg Packer, president of VGM’s U.S. Rehab.

“All decisions in D.C. are based upon, what can you give me that’s concrete to prove what you’re saying is true?” he said. “They want data-driven decisions.”