News & Analysis as of

CMS Clarifies Terms of Global Settlement Offer

As previously reported, on August 29, 2014, CMS issued a global settlement offer (GSO) to acute care hospitals with pending appeals of denials for inpatient claims. Specifically, CMS is offering to settle all qualifying...more

Attention Hospitals! Act Now To Get 68 Cents For Your Medicare Dollar!

It’s no secret that CMS is drowning in appeals from denials of Medicare claims for inpatient care. The number of pending appeals was estimated at half a million back in February, and it’s only grown since then. One reason...more

CMS Offers Global Settlement of Inpatient Status Claims with Pending Appeals

On August 29, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) announced a global settlement offer to acute care and critical access hospitals with currently pending appeals of inpatient status claims denials....more

A Primer on Medicare Requirements for Physician Supervision of "Incident to" Services

Services provided by a physician’s auxiliary staff that are “incident to” the physician’s services are paid under the physician fee schedule at a higher rate, as though the physician had personally furnished the services....more

Fire Safety Requirements for Hospitals and Other Health Care Facilities: How CMS Is Interpreting Occupancy Classifications and...

On April 16, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published a proposed rule amending the fire safety standards for hospitals and other types of health care facilities. Compliance with the fire safety...more

Health Law Blog: CMS Offers Settlement to Hospitals for Resolving Patient Status Denials

On September 9, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) held a conference call with providers and other interested parties regarding CMS’s recent offer to resolve any acute care or critical access hospitals’...more

CMS Offers Deal to Hospitals to Drop RAC Appeals

On August 29, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a deal to hospitals willing to drop pending inpatient-status claims appeals. These appeals have grown exponentially in recent years due to the...more

CMS Waves Partial White Flag in Appeals of Payment Status Denials

For the last several years, hospitals, on the one hand, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and its contractors (collectively, CMS), on the other, have been engaged in a spirited dispute over claims denials for...more

CMS Says: Let's Make a Deal

In the hours before everyone began enjoying Labor Day Weekend, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued an important inpatient hospital review update....more

Special (Limited) CMS Offer to Settle Claims on Appeal

With little fanfare just before the Labor Day weekend, CMS announced a program in which it would enter into administrative agreements with eligible providers in exchange for the providers’ withdrawal of pending appeals...more

CMS Issues Final Rule for Inpatient Stays in Acute Care and Long Term Care Hospitals

On August 1, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued its annual final rule for policy and payment changes applicable to inpatient stays in acute care and long term care hospitals (Final Rule). This...more

AHA Responds to Proposed Home Health Face-to-Face Changes

As previously reported, on July 7, 2014, CMS issued the Calendar Year 2015 Home Health Prospective Payment System Proposed Rule (Proposed Rule). On August 18, 2014, the American Hospital Association (AHA) submitted comments...more

AHRQ Releases Guidance for Reductions in Medicaid Hospital Readmissions

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has issued a comprehensive guide with an interactive toolkit for providers to target reductions in Medicaid hospital readmissions. While numerous CMS initiatives have...more

New Federal Guidance on Reducing Medicaid Hospital Readmissions

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) recently issued a guide to assist hospitals in reducing Medicaid patient readmissions. The AHRQ Hospital Guide to Reducing Medicaid Readmissions is the product of a...more

Sunshine Act Implementation Proceeds; CMS Re-opens the Open Payments System

On August 15, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) re-opened the Open Payments system for physicians and teaching hospitals to register, review, and, if needed, dispute information gathered to date. CMS...more

Who Audits the Auditors?

Since the advent of Medicare in 1965, hospitals have bemoaned the cost and burden of Medicare audits. The complaints increased when CMS hired private contractors for the audits. They became deafening in 2009 with the advent...more

CMS Releases FY 2015 Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) Final Rule

On August 4, 2014, CMS released the annual Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment System Final Rule for FY 2015 (the “Final Rule”) affecting discharges occurring on or after October 1, 2014. For inpatient acute care...more

New Federal Health Care Facility Regulations Could Mean More Construction Work

On April 16, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, published proposed rules that would amend the fire safety standards for hospitals,...more

CMS Publishes FY 2015 Final IPPS Rule

On August 4, 2014, CMS posted its final changes and updates to the Medicare Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) that apply for fiscal year (FY) 2015, effective October 1, 2014. Below are some of the highlights of the...more

Health Headlines: Also in the News - August 2014

Hospital IPPS Final Rule Not Yet Released – As of the time this edition of Health Headlines was sent to press, CMS has not yet released the hospital inpatient prospective payment system (IPPS) final rule for FY 2015....more

Brace Yourself: The RACs Are Back

Under the controversial program private contractors audit hospitals and other Medicare providers for fraudulent and erroneous Medicare billing. Why is it controversial? Because the auditors are paid a percentage of...more

Impact on Medicare Payments of Shift in Site of Care for Chemotherapy Administration

Two independent trends, acting in combination, are currently resulting in increased Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) chemotherapy payments. The first trend is a shift in the site of care for cancer patients from physicians’...more

CMS Proposes Regulations: Changes to Physician Fee Schedule, Hospital Outpatient, and Ambulatory Surgical Center Policy and...

On July 3, 2014, The former revises payment policies under the Medicare Physician Fee ScheCenters for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed two regulations, CMS-1612-P and CMS-1613-P. dule, while the latter makes...more

The Probe and Educate Process For The Two-Midnight Rule

On August 2, 2013, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) released the final rule for the 2014 Medicare Inpatient Prospective Payment System (“IPPS”), effective October 1, 2013.[1] Introduced in the IPPS...more

Health Care: As Sunshine Act Deadlines Approach Physicians and Hospitals Should Prepare for Transparency in Their Financial...

On September 30, 2014, in accordance with the Federal Sunshine Act (the Sunshine Act), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will publically disclose payments and "other transfers of value" by pharmaceutical,...more

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