Evaluation of the Home Health Independence Demonstration: Barriers to a Successful Experiment Were Multifaceted and Difficult Policy Issues Remain

Publisher: Princeton, NJ: Mathematica Policy Research
Oct 23, 2007
Valerie Cheh, Nancy Duda, Barbara Lepidus Carlson, Karen CyBulski, Amy Zambrowski, and Andrew McGuirk
The Medicare home health benefit was originally designed to meet an individual’s post-hospitalization needs. When the legislation was written, a beneficiary could receive home health care only after a hospital stay. The homebound requirement was instituted as a cost-containment measure—once a beneficiary was well enough to travel, the beneficiary would receive care in an ambulatory setting. Over the years, the benefit was changed so it is no longer just a post-hospitalization benefit, but the homebound requirement has remained in place.