Electronic visit verification (EVV) vendors in the U.S offer home health, home care, and personal care agencies the technology required for compliance with the requirements for visits set forth by the 21st Century Cures Act. With many agencies having difficulties meeting tight EVV implementation deadlines even before the Covid-19 pandemic, only a few states met the federally mandated deadline for personal care services, which was Jan. 1, 2020. Good faith exemptions and extensions often eased the burden, adding another year or more for agencies to work with state-provided solutions, select their own preferred EVV vendor, an alternate EVV system, or work with their current home health software providers towards compliance.
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While the deadline for personal care agencies already passed in January of 2021 for many states, and extensions for homecare services moved into 2023 what should agencies be considering when selecting an EVV vendor?
Is my state currently offering a free EVV system?
Companies like Sandata, Tellus, and others work with states as an EVV aggregator, offering EVV options including training, guidance on visit protocols, and online classes or resources on EVV compliance. While in some cases, these systems provide a “No-bells-and-whistles” version of EVV functionality, you may check with your official state Medicaid website for information on whether a cost-free EVV system is available. Click here to view Alora’s EVV Vendor solution.
Does my current EVV vendor or the system I am considering meet the requirements set forth by the 21st Century Cures Act?
The 21st Century Cures act outlines the requirements of data that an approved EVV system must collect to remain in compliance with the EVV mandate. An approved EVV software must collect:
Am I free to choose any EVV system, and what EVV implementation model is my state operating under?
Various U.S states have set forth differing guidelines that affect what type of EVV vendor you can select. There are multiple models that states have adopted. There are a few basic EVV models the majority of states have chosen to implement:
Open vendor EVV model: The open model EVV state generally will choose an official EVV vendor and electronic visit verification data aggregator. Agencies are then free to utilize these state-sponsored EVV vendors free of cost. Alternatively, an agency may work with an EVV vendor of their choosing or their existing solution at their own expense, so long as the alternative EVV software can successfully integrate with the state’s chosen EVV data aggregator.
Mandated EVV system: Not as popular among states as the open model, under this state model type, agency providers HAVE TO use whatever state-sponsored, state-funded EVV vendor is selected.
State-mandated external vendor: Agency providers must use the state-sponsored, state-funded vendor.
State-mandated In-house EVV system: A state may elect to create and manage a unique EVV system, and informed all providers that it must be used.
Provider choice EVV model: Under this model providers select an EVV vendor and will cover the costs. In some cases, a state that uses this model may raise reimbursement rates to offset the costs to agencies.
Managed care organization (MCO) choice: Under this model, MCOs select an EVV vendor and cover the costs, generally with support from the state.
To ensure that EVV meets requirements without problems, some of the more popular functionality includes:
EVV implementation deadlines can also be unique to each state, particularly with the number of good faith extensions granted. The federal mandate set forth in the 21st Century Cures Act requires electronic visit verification for personal care services to begin on Jan. 1, 2020 (Jan. 1, 2021, in states that received a “good faith effort” exemption). The EVV requirement for home health care services (HHCS) was extended to Jan. 1, 2023.
How do I find the best EVV vendor?
Some agencies if residing in a state that provides a free EVV option, will go with that option to simply meet the requirement. While this can be an effective strategy, it can still pose the problem of managing visits in two separate systems, complicating work and increasing the chances of costly errors.
Managing EVV outside of your home health software, in example through a stand-alone system, requires you to re-enter data. This process takes time and introduces the possibility of mistakes caused by human error.
Alora software integrates EVV into a complete, easy-to-use software. All of the information for each visit — about the patient, caregiver, agency, schedules, and service provided – is built-in.
So, your caregiver doesn’t have to re-enter information … and your agency gets the benefit of accuracy and efficiency.
Your agency has a choice to make: 1) Manage EVV separately through a stand-alone system or 2) manage it through full-solution software that has EVV built-in. If you choose the latter, you need to look at agency management software from a vendor that’s certified by your state as an “alternate” vendor.
Alora is designated as an alternate EVV vendor in many states. And in many others, we’re waiting for the states to announce their EVV requirements so that we can tailor our EVV solution to meet state regulations.
Alora has built connectivity with many EVV aggregators, including, Sandata, Tellus, HHAeXchange, and Optum, to automatically transmit EVV data. This connectivity allows agencies to use Alora as their all-in-one solution for EVV and agency management. Alora automatically transmits all visits completed as planned to the EVV aggregator. Alora flags visits with discrepancies – such as caregiver forgetting to clock out – for manual review before transmitting to the aggregator.
No other software company has more expertise in EVV than Alora. Here’s why:
We were fully integrating EVV into our platform even before federal legislation passed; and we’ve been tailoring our solution to meet the exact requirements and processes of state Medicaid agencies, which vary from state to state.
Alora was the first alternate software solution provider authorized by several states that have implemented EVV.
By choosing Alora, you’ll not only meet the EVV requirement – all of your EVV activities and information will be completely tied into scheduling, billing, payroll and every other aspect of your home care services.
Here’s what EVV by Alora looks like for your agency: