Updated on 03/29/2021
Sequestration Moratorium extended through 2021
Author: Michael Tidd LVN, HCS-D, COS-C
Ten days ago, we urged you to act and petition your congressional representatives and senators to act quickly in order to extend the sequestration moratorium. Through the hard work of NAHC and your efforts, we have been victorious! Congress extended the sequestration moratorium scheduled to end at the end of March. This would have resulted in the 2% reduction to claims being reinstated. Thankfully due to the home health and hospice community coming together, this 2% sequestration penalty will not be reduced from your claims for the entire 2021 calendar year.
While the bill is successful in suspending the 2% reduction, there is complication that was introduced. A budgetary rule in lawmaking called pay-as-you-go, commonly referenced as “Paygo” requires an offset to the suspension to be take effect to cover the new spending. The COVID-19 relief act signed into law earlier this month would result in the paygo triggering a 4% provider reimbursement reduction to occur in January 2022. The House version of the bill provided a waiver that would prevent the 2% being rolled forward and therefore no additional rate cut from claim payments taking effect. Unfortunately the Senate version did not include this waiver, but instead added five months of the sequestration to take effect in 2031 at a 4% rate. Because of this discrepancy, the House will need to act on the Senate version. Since the House is in recess for the next two weeks and it is not clear on when they will hold a vote on this issue.