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Care Compare Update: New Information On Home Health-Physician Relationships

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) announced on Monday, November 14, that it would make new updates to Care Compare, the all-in-one search tool for consumers seeking home health, hospice, and other Medicare-reimbursed healthcare services.

    What’s New?

    Care Compare will now include new information on providers’ relationships with doctors and clinicians, which will be found under the “Doctors and Clinicians” section. The update will provide information on clinicians who aren’t affiliated with a hospital but work in other healthcare facilities.

    On top of letting Medicare beneficiaries and their families know which providers their physicians are associated with, the update will also include details on affiliations with skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), long-term care hospitals (LTCHs), in-patient rehabilitation facilities (IRFs), and dialysis facilities.

    Previously, there were seven different Compare sites for the various Medicare-reimbursed healthcare settings. The addition of information on physician and clinician affiliations comes around two years after CMS consolidated all its various “Compare” tools into today’s one-stop shop.

    Implications of the New Update

    The purpose of all the additional information in this new update is to support patients and caregivers in making sound healthcare decisions. It is also part of CMS’ effort to make Care Compare more transparent and seamless across major healthcare settings. This is in addition to the establishment of a national directory of healthcare providers and services, which was kickstarted in October.

    It is evident that Care Compare’s recent updates are geared toward simplifying potentially complicated processes by providing easy access to accurate and useful information. This would prove valuable to patients and providers in their pursuit to make good healthcare choices, ultimately leading to positive business and patient care outcomes.