The House recently passed its version of The Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation (IMPACT) Act of 2014 (H.R. 4994/S. 2553), which would require various post-acute providers, including inpatient rehabilitation facilities, long-term care hospitals, skilled nursing facilities and home health agencies, to report standardized patient assessment data and quality and resource use measures.

The House bill includes a phase-in for the reporting requirements, with the initial reporting (for skilled nursing facilities and inpatient rehabilitation facilities) beginning October 1, 2016.  Reporting for long-term care hospitals and home health agencies would be required in 2018 and 2019, respectively.

The bill requires changes to the conditions of participation for post-acute care (PAC) providers, inpatient prospective payment system and critical access hospitals so that PAC quality measure data are used to inform the discharge planning process.  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) would be required to report recommendations to Congress for a PAC payment system that establishes payment rates based on individual characteristics rather than treatment setting.

The collection of patient assessment data and establishment of consistent quality measures are widely viewed as important steps to consideration of PAC reforms.  The Senate is taking up a similar bill.  According to GovTrack.us, the measure has an 82 percent chance of becoming law.