Topics
More on Reimbursement

MedPAC floats 3.5% hike in hospital reimbursement, freeze of physician rates

Group also wants to freeze rates for physicians, home health aides, skilled nursing facilities, ambulatory surgical centers and other facilities.

MedPAC, in a statement, said it wants Congress to flatten the rates so they are the same for long-term care as well as acute care hospitals for cases where patients are not considered “chronically ill.”MedPAC, in a statement, said it wants Congress to flatten the rates so they are the same for long-term care as well as acute care hospitals for cases where patients are not considered “chronically ill.”

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission has recommended a 3.5 percent increase in the rates paid for inpatient and outpatient hospital procedures in 2016. The group also wants to level the field between what is paid to hospitals and physician offices.

MedPAC, in a statement, said it wants Congress to flatten the rates so they are the same for long-term care as well as acute care hospitals for cases where patients are not considered “chronically ill.”

For physicians, MedPAC recommends freezing the rates paid to physicians, home health aides, skilled nursing facilities, ambulatory surgical centers, dialysis facilities, hospice, inpatient rehabilitation facilities and long-term care hospitals in 2016. The group also wants to set up a new sustainable growth formula to handle payment increases after the Primary Care Incentive Payment Program expires at the end of the year. The new bonus would be paid to primary care physicians on a per-beneficiary basis, unlike the PCIPP, which paid physicians a 10 perecent bonus on top of its reimbursements for certain procedures.

The group also wants to level payments for inpatient rehabilitation hospitals and skilled nursing facilities since it believe the differences may be causing patients to miss out on the best type of care for their situations.

“We have a number of concerns about MedPAC’s IRF-SNF site neutral recommendation, including that it may lead to the provision of SNF-level care for beneficiaries who actually would have achieved a better outcome if they had received IRF-level care,” said Joanna Hiatt Kim, American Hospital Association vice president of payment policy, in a statement.