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Good riddance: Respondents support elimination of CMN

Good riddance: Respondents support elimination of CMN

HME NewspollYARMOUTH, Maine – Outdated, redundant and confusing is the common refrain from HME Newspoll respondents who overwhelmingly support CMS’s decision to eliminate the CMN requirement for home oxygen therapy. 

“The CMN is an outdated tool that simply seems to supply Medicare with another means to deny claims on technicalities,” wrote Josh Turner, billing manager at McAbee Medical in Decatur, Ala. “Everything on the CMN is in the medical record, so there is no reason for the CMN to exist.” 

CMS on Sept. 27 posted a final national coverage determination for home oxygen that not only eliminates the CMN requirement but also expands access to the therapy for patients with acute conditions. 

The 93% of respondents who agree with CMS’s decision say the agency is putting patients over paperwork, not to mention removing an unnecessary task from the provider’s to-do list. 

“Anything to remove the burden of paperwork is going to have a huge impact on our industry being able to remain profitable,” wrote one respondent. “Removing the CMN is helping to eliminate one piece of the burdensome documentation requirements that the supplier has to chase the physician down to receive.” 

To help eliminate any gray areas, however, the industry has subsequently asked CMS to eliminate the medical record review for home oxygen and to accept the clinician prescription/standard written order – a request that 89% of respondents say they support. 

“If a doctor prescribes oxygen for a patient, that should be proof enough that the patient needs it,” write Diana Hinton, reimbursement supervisor at Owens Healthcare in Redding, Calif. “(They) have reviewed the need with the patient. Or at least if you still want medical record review, don’t make it so difficult.” 

Respondents say they are hopeful that CMS’s decision on the CMN means they’re listening and open to other changes. 

“Eliminating medical record review once seemed like a pipe dream, but if it actually happens for oxygen claims, I'll be on Cloud 9,” wrote Ryan French, home health director at Jim's Pharmacy & Home Health in Port Angeles, Wash. 

Respondents say they are keeping an eye on the implications of any changes farther down the road. 

“Auditors should be looking for the same information and not scrutinize providers, causing more administrative cost,” wrote one provider. “Providers should not be paid to have the funds later recouped because auditors do not ‘classify’ medical necessity based on personal opinion.” 


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