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CMS Proposes Rule to Update Medicare Admissions Policies

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued a proposed rule that would update 2018 Medicare payment and policies when patients are admitted into hospitals.  “The proposed rule aims to relieve regulatory burdens for providers; supports the patient-doctor relationship in health care; and promotes transparency, flexibility, and innovation in the delivery of care,” according to a news release from CMS.

CMS also released a Request for Information (RFI) on ideas for regulatory, policy, practice and procedural changes to guide the discussion on future regulatory decisions for inpatient and long-term hospitals.  CMS is accepting comments on the proposed rule and RFI until June 13, 2017.

“Through this proposed rule we want to reduce burdens for hospitals so they can focus on providing high quality care for patients,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma in the news release.  “Medicare is better able to support the work of dedicated hospitals and clinicians who provide the care that people need with these more flexible and simplified approaches.”

The news release also states, “CMS is committed to transforming the health care delivery system—and the Medicare program—by putting a strong focus on patient-centered care, so providers can direct their time and resources to patients and improve outcomes.”  CMS is also proposing a one-year moratorium on “the payment policy threshold for patient admissions in long-term care hospitals while CMS continues to evaluate long-term care hospital policies” and a reduction in reporting requirements for hospitals using electronic health records.

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