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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released a new patient experience rating system for home health agencies (HHAs).  The Home Health Care Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HHCAHPS) Survey is the first of its kind to evaluate patients’ experiences with HHAs.  Ratings are collected from patients, families, and friends of patients.  The HHCAHPS Survey is available on Home Health Compare, a publicly available website that provides information on how well Medicare-certified agencies provide care to patients.

Using the HHCAHPS Survey star ratings, Home Health Compare allows comparison of HHAs in the following five categories of service:

  • Care of patients;
  • Communication between providers and patients;
  • Specific care issues;
  • Overall rating of care provided by the HHA; and
  • Survey summary star rating.

Currently, approximately 6,000 HHAs have new patient care experience data on Home Health Compare.  Through the HHCAHPS Survey star ratings, CMS aims to help patients and their families make more informed health care decisions and to encourage HHAs to improve patient experience and quality of care.

The CMS press release is available at:

https://www.cms.gov/Newsroom/MediaReleaseDatabase/Press-releases/2016-Press-releases-items/2016-01-28.html.

The CMS Home Health Compare is available at:

https://www.medicare.gov/homehealthcompare/search.html.

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.  “CMS Releases First Ever Home Health Patient Experience of Care Star Ratings.”  Press Release.  28 Jan. 2016.

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