I am thankful you're here to help a person back to one's feet. Without you, I truly would be in a wheelchair. Thank you.

Kathleen A. Maideus

CMS Issues Final Rules On Medicare Reimbursements for FY 2008

CMS on Tuesday and Wednesday issued final rules on Medicare reimbursements for inpatient hospital, inpatient rehabilitation and skilled nursing facility care that agency officials said would help ensure the program's long-term sustainability, CQ HealthBeat reports. The inpatient hospital care rule in fiscal year 2008 will reduce Medicare reimbursements by 1.2%, rather than 2.4% as CMS previously had proposed, although agency officials indicated the possibility of future adjustments. Under the rule, Medicare reimbursements for inpatient hospital care will increase by a total of $4 billion in FY 2008, according to CMS.

The rule also includes provisions to ensure that Medicare no longer reimburses for the additional costs of some preventable conditions, such as certain hospital-acquired infections. In addition, the rule expands the list of publicly reported quality measures and reduces Medicare reimbursements when hospitals replace devices that they receive at no or reduced cost. The inpatient rehabilitation care rule will increase Medicare reimbursements for such treatment by an average of 3.2% in FY 2008.

As of July 1, 2008, CMS no longer will consider "co-morbidities" in determinations of whether facilities qualify for Medicare reimbursements for inpatient rehabilitation care, a provision opposed by the American Hospital Association. The skilled nursing facility care rule will increase Medicare reimbursements by 3.3% in FY 2008 (Reichard, CQ HealthBeat, 8/1).

Reprinted with kind permission from http://www.kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at http://www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/healthpolicy. The Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. © 2005 Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.

Source: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com

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