LHC Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:LHCG) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Nov 07, 2019 • 09:00 am ET


LHC Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:LHCG) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Keith Myers

of one nurse, my wife, Ginger cared before elderly neighbors on a voluntary basis, before and after the shift at our local hospital 25 years ago to now a leading national health care services organization caring 400,000 active daily patients isn't a celebration of the numbers. It's a recognition that everything we do starts with a genuine desire to help people and make lives better through the consistent delivery of high quality and compassionate care to every patient and every family we have privilege to serve.

Our people have always been and remain our greatest assets and their experience and expertise will be critical in the clinical care models we have designed to thrive as an organization under the new PDGM model. So turning to PDGM, last week's final ruling by CMS was a significant improvement for the home health industry compared where we started in the early stages of their real rule-making process.

We are pleased to see that CMS has reduced the proposed prospective payment adjustments based on assumed behavioral changes to 4.3%, a reduction of approximately half from their original proposed adjustment in the proposed rule earlier this year. By doing so, CMS has lessened the burden on the industry and the risk to Medicare beneficiaries who depend on home health services during the transition to a drastically new model that represents the most significant change in reimbursement methodology for more than 20 years, since the Balanced Budget Act of 1997.

This is a positive development for LHC and for the industry and most important for the elderly patients we serve who represent the most vulnerable members of our society. Over the course of this year, we were able to build tremendous support on the Hill with important champions in both chambers of Congress and we spent a considerable amount of time in direct discussions with HHS and CMS leadership which we greatly appreciated.

With respect to the legislation and for the great work to-date to secure support of S.433 and H.R. 2573, LHC and industry secured 1/3rd of the Senate and 13 bipartisan cosponsors and nearly 1/3rd of the house and 14 bipartisan cosponsors.

This successful achievement of such broad based congressional support demonstrates the appreciation and understanding of the value we provide to our health care system as a whole and the recognition by Congress of the importance of the value of the care we provide to patients and families in their homes. I want to thank our many sponsors, who have supported the regulatory and legislative changes on the PDGM. We believe their strong support send a clear message of their understanding of the need to preserve access to home health services to all Medicare beneficiaries, particularly in rural areas, which was helped -- which helped to bring a heightened sense of awareness to the issue.

I would also like to thank CMS Administrator, Seema Verma and her staff as well as that of HHS leadership from multiple meetings with us and their willingness