Noteworthy News

Archive for November, 2015

 

MedPAC Meets

Last week the members of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) met in Washington, D.C. to talk about how Medicare pays for a variety of services needed by the nation’s 50 million Medicare beneficiaries. Among the issues addressed by MedPAC during two days of public meetings were next steps in supporting primary care; telehealth services; developing a unified payment system for post-acute care; and services to dual-eligible (Medicare and Medicaid) beneficiaries. To see the issue briefs and presentations offered at the meeting go here, to MedPAC’s web site

Serving Patients With Complex Needs

Patients with complex medical needs account for a significant proportion of overall health care spending, and many efforts in recent years, including some mandated by the Affordable Care Act, have sought to identify the best ways to serve such patients while also reducing the cost of doing so. A new analysis by the Commonwealth Fund analyzes promising models for serving these patients and offers six principles for improving their care. Those principles are: Identify subgroups of patients with similar needs and challenges. Shift the delivery of care for high-need patients from institutional settings to home and community settings whenever possible. [&hellip

Serving Patients With Complex Needs

Patients with complex medical needs account for a significant proportion of overall health care spending, and many efforts in recent years, including some mandated by the Affordable Care Act, have sought to identify the best ways to serve such patients while also reducing the cost of doing so. A new analysis by the Commonwealth Fund analyzes promising models for serving these patients and offers six principles for improving their care. Those principles are: Identify subgroups of patients with similar needs and challenges. Shift the delivery of care for high-need patients from institutional settings to home and community settings whenever possible. [&hellip

CMS Proposal Would Mandate Hospital Discharge Planning

Hospitals that participate in Medicare and Medicaid would be required to develop discharge plans for all inpatients and many outpatients under a new regulation proposed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). According to a CMS news release, …hospitals, including inpatient rehabilitation facilities and long-term care hospitals, critical access hospitals, and home health agencies would be required to develop a discharge plan based on the goals, preferences, and needs of each applicable patient . Under the proposed rule, hospitals and critical access hospitals would be required to develop a discharge plan within 24 hours of admission or registration [&hellip

Hospitals Struggle With Charity Care Requirements

At times because of insufficient guidance and at times as a result of questionable performance, many non-profit hospitals are having a hard time meeting the Affordable Care Act’s requirements governing the provision of charity care as a condition of retaining their tax-exempt status. According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine and based on 2012 data, the vast majority of hospitals now have mandated written charity care policies yet fewer than a third of them were charging uninsured patients the same fees they charge insured patients. While most stopped reporting unpaid bills to credit agencies, fewer [&hellip

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