All About BNCC News

Trying To Understand Electronic Visit Verification, Providers Struggle (EVV)

Sep 14

For the majority of home-based care providers, COVID-19 has been at the forefront of clinical and operational activity.

New federal technology rules, such electronic visit verification (EVV), are simple to overlook when the public health emergency is receiving everyone's attention.

Beginning on January 1st of the next year, home care providers who are compensated by Medicaid will need to electronically verify the services they provide on the job. Caretakers are required to keep track of informational elements such the date, time, location, kind of service, and other details.

It won't be necessary for certain Medicare-certified home health care providers to do so until January 1, 2023. In the meanwhile, several states are requiring it earlier for home health.

To reduce fraud and abuse in the provision of home-based care, the 21st Century Cures Act was enacted in 2016. States are in charge of upholding the requirement, despite the federal regulations for EVV being established by the Act.

States' Federal Medical Assistance Percentage funding will be cut if they don't meet the EVV standards by the January 1 deadline, which will have an impact on state program resources.

In certain ways, it makes sense that some service providers have put off the adoption of EVV.

The first plan called for EVV adoption to start on January 1, 2020, which would have started this year. As a result, most states—including New York—asked for and received exceptions, which delayed implementation by a year.

Emina Poricanin, managing attorney of Poricanin Law in New York, claims that "New York state received many applications to postpone the implementation owing to the difficulties in implementing this in the personal care industry." "They have received approval. The state of New York lacked the authority to simply postpone it on its own.

Poricanin claims that around two weeks before they are required to be in compliance with the law, several providers are beginning to feel unprepared.

There are still far too many suppliers calling me asking what EVV is and what I should do about it, she said. "They are really late questions at this point in the game."

States also contribute to the overall industry readiness, according to Courtney Martin, an EVV expert for technology solutions provider CellTrak.

It heavily relies on the local state implementation approach. According to Martin, some states have been ahead of the curve in terms of implementation and have already given their providers a lot of information on the standards and how they will be evaluated against them. "Approximately half of the states have done it. Additionally, some states are experiencing a slight delay in implementation."

Over 4,000 home care firms worldwide, including EVV, rely on CellTrak, a company located in Schaumburg, Illinois, for home-based care solutions.

Regarding the mandate, providers have two responsibilities. They need to collect precise, compliant EVV data on the spot, at the point of care. Additionally, the state or the managed care organization that requires the information for compliance must get it from the providers.

Martin contends that whatever technology tools a provider has in place must help them in doing this.

Providers may achieve this goal by using either a state-provided or a commercially available EVV system.

"Those judgements are obviously quite particular to the providers," Martin said. Some providers may choose the free option if they are looking to meet the minimum requirement. "In general, the state system will have a pretty straightforward check-the-box compliance.""

Martin thinks that multi-state vendors could have an issue with this.

The drawback of a free solution, according to her, is that if you operate in many states, each of which has a different free solution. The government is now making an effort to help caregivers get training and oversight for these varied state options.

When selecting a technical solution, providers should consider both their operating procedure and state compliance needs.

As the EVV implementation date draws near, Martin underlined the need of providers initiating the data collection and documentation process as soon as feasible.

We encourage providers to implement it now rather than waiting for government directions, she said. "This is necessary so that their caregivers can get used to the technology solution. It enables them to think through how the implementation of their EVV processes would impact their internal agency operations. They may also prepare ahead of time for the state advice's release."

Attending state stakeholder meetings can help providers stay up to date with new information.

For instance, the state of New York has held weekly calls for the last several months. According to Poricanin, the discussions were held in order to help providers prepare for EVV and address certain potential technical issues.

Martin believes that the use of EVV will improve care delivery as physicians go on while the public health emergency is ongoing.

You'll know a lot more about that patient and the care they need, she assured. This might improve your performance during the appointment and notify you of any unique circumstances you need to be aware of, such the patient's potential vulnerability to COVID-19 exposure.