Noteworthy News

Archive for MedPAC


Congress Open to Revisiting Medicare Site-Neutral Outpatient Payments?

Conceding that Congress “…has received a large amount of feedback” since including in a 2015 law a provision that compels Medicare to pay for outpatient care on a site-neutral basis, the House Energy and Commerce Committee and its Health Subcommittee have invited members of the health care community “…to provide feedback to the Committee related to the enactment of Section 603 of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015.” While noting the differences between Medicare outpatient payments for services provide in hospital-based facilities, private doctors’ offices, and other sites and pointing out that the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) had urged [&hellip

MedPAC Recommends Socio-Economic Risk Adjustment of Medicare Advantage Star Ratings

The agency that advises Congress on Medicare payment issues has suggested to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) that it revise its star ratings systems for Medicare Advantage plans. In a letter to CMS in response to its request for comment on star ratings, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) agreed with CMS that there is evidence of a difference in Medicare Advantage plan performance based on the low-income status or disability of plan members. While CMS continues to consider how to adjust for such a challenge, MedPAC recommended an interim approach called a “Categorical Adjustment Index” that [&hellip

MedPAC Meets, Discusses Payment Issues

Last week the commissioners serving on the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) met in Washington, D.C. to discuss the group’s future recommendations to Congress. While MedPAC’s recommendations are not binding on Congress or the administration, they are highly respected and often find themselves worked into new law or regulations. Among the issues MedPAC addressed during two days of public meetings were: Medicare inpatient and outpatient payments the Medicare Advantage program star rating system payments to ambulatory surgery centers, skilled nursing facilities, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, and long-term care hospitals payments for physician services, home health services, hospice care, and outpatient dialysis [&hellip

MedPAC Addresses Major Issues for Urban Safety-Net Hospitals

The independent federal agency that advises Congress on Medicare payment issues discussed several issues of great importance to urban safety-net hospitals at its December 10 meeting in Washington, D.C. During the course of a discussion about FY 2017 Medicare inpatient and outpatient payment increases, the commissioners of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) also considered staff recommendations that would alter the section 340B prescription drug discount program and Medicare disproportionate share hospital payments (Medicare DSH). Medicare DSH and the 340B program are essential to private, non-profit urban safety-net hospitals. NAUH members have received a memo describing the proposals MedPAC commissioners [&hellip

OIG Reveals 2016 Plans

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Inspector General (OIG) has published its work plan for the 2016 fiscal year. In 2016, the OIG will continue to examine all aspects of HHS endeavor, including Medicare, Medicaid, hospital services, public health activities, and more. In the coming year it will continue a number of hospital-focused projects while also focusing more on health care delivery, health care reform, alternative payment methodologies, and value-based purchasing initiatives. Among the OIG’s planned Medicare projects in 2016 – some of them continued from the past and some of them new, quoted directly from [&hellip

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