Date: 07/09/2009

Overview of Hospice Licensing and Reporting


Votes: View--> Action Taken:

01:03 PM -- Overview of Hospice Licensing and Reporting

The committee reconvened. Howard Roitman, Division Director, and Judy Hughes, Division Section Chief, Health Facilities and Emergency Medical Services, Department of Public Health and Environment (DPHE), introduced themselves to the committee and provided a handout (Attachment E). Mr. Roitman stated that their presentation will address hospice licensure and reporting requirements of hospice care programs. He stated that the department licenses and inspects hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, nursing homes, assisted living residences, hospices, and others health facilities. The department also performs state surveys for Medicare and Medicaid certification. Mr. Roitman stated that the department licenses approximately 50 hospice centers.


01:15 PM

Committee members discussed the three regulatory barriers that were raised during previous witness testimony, specifically whether a hospice care patient who is admitted into a hospital may return to an assisted living facility, the concern of physicians writing prescriptions for analgesics, and the issue regarding the PASR. Representative Roberts discussed with the department the assisted living facility issue. Senator Tochtrop described the concerns regarding the REMS and the PASR issue. Senator Tochtrop suggested the department obtain a waiver to address the PASR issue. Mr. Roitman noted the regulatory barriers and stated that he would evaluate each issue raised and get back to the committee.

01:17 PM

Mr. Roitman explained the process for certification and licensure of hospice care centers. He spoke to the process of occurrence reporting and investigation. He stated that there has been 28 occurrence reports over a period of approximately three years. Committee members discussed some of the statistics provided in the power point presentation.

01:30 PM

Committee members discussed with the department ways in which to address some of the regulatory boundaries presented to the committee.

01:41 PM

Mr. Roitman spoke to the procedure of how the department investigates complaints. He stated that the department maintains a hotline. He described the types of complaints that the department has looked into including quality of care, nursing services, patient rights, pharmaceutical services, and patient assessment. Mr. Roitman stated that because of the current funding situation, the initial inspections and surveys are not being conducted. Representative Riesberg asked if the Joint Commission (formerly the Joint Commission on Accreditation) could conduct the surveys. Mr. Roitman responded that it could be appropriate for the Joint Commission to conduct surveys. He stated that the department would like to work with stakeholders to develop a fee structure to conduct surveys to increased oversight of hospice programs.

02:00 PM

Representative Balmer asked Mr. Roitman about governmental regulation, particularly if there are any hospice associations that do not want further regulation. Mr. Roitman replied that a comprehensive discussion on this topic has not occurred, but that he has spoken with association officials. He further noted that he is conscious of the business climate under which hospice providers operate. Representative Balmer replied that a combination of self-regulation and government regulation could be preferable. Mr. Roitman responded to Representative Balmer's comments regarding regulation.