NAUH Comments on Proposed Medicare Regulation (Part 2 of 4)
On April 30, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published a 1500-page draft regulation detailing how it proposed paying hospitals for the inpatient care they provide to their Medicare patients in FY 2016 and invited comment on its proposal from stakeholders and interested parties.
On June 12, the National Association of Urban Hospitals provided its written comments in a letter to CMS. This week NAUH presents those comments in this space:
- Yesterday: Medicare DSH
- Today: Hospital inpatient rates
- Tomorrow: the hospital readmissions reduction program
- Thursday: short hospital stays and outliers
Hospital Inpatient Rates
NAUH recognizes that some of the proposed adjustments of the annual Medicare inpatient rate update are statutory requirements. Nevertheless, we are disappointed by the small increase proposed: a net of only 0.3 percent after the various adjustments.
From the perspective of providers, Medicare is continually asking us to do more: report more data, provide care in different ways, invest in more health care information technology, and more, yet continually small increases like this one suggest that Medicare is not interested in helping to pay for any of these improvements. Urban safety-net hospitals are continually stepping up to meet these challenges and urge CMS to join us in stepping up by showing a greater willingness to share the cost of doing so.