Press Release

Statement on Final FY 2018 IPPS Rule

Tom Nickels

Executive Vice President

American Hospital Association

 

August 2, 2017

 

Today, CMS finalized a rule that could impact hospitals’ ability to provide services for patients who rely on them for their care. Specifically, we continue to have concerns over the accuracy and consistency of the “Worksheet S-10” data that CMS will use to determine the cost of treating uninsured patients. We had urged the agency to delay its use in calculating DSH payments by one year to further educate hospitals about how to accurately and consistently complete the S-10, and also implement a stop-loss policy and audit process. We are disappointed CMS chose to implement its use for FY 2018 and without these additional protections for hospitals. We will continue to communicate with the agency on the steps that should be taken to improve the quality of these data, which would ensure fair payment for hospitals treating vulnerable communities. 

We are also disappointed that CMS has decided not to restore last year’s excess cut to reimbursement rates for hospital services. While a reduction to the hospital update factor was mandated by law in 2012, CMS ignored Congress’ intent by imposing a cut that was nearly two times what Congress specified. 

However, we are pleased that CMS has decided to place a moratorium on the implementation of the 25% Rule for long-term care hospitals to allow time to determine if the policy is still necessary. In addition, we appreciate the agency allowing hospitals and critical access hospitals to report meaningful use modified Stage 2 in 2018, as well as implementation of a 90-day meaningful use reporting period in fiscal year 2018. Lastly, we are glad the agency recognized that its “96-hour” condition of participation for critical access hospitals could stand in the way of promoting essential, and often lifesaving, health care services to rural America; we will continue to advocate for a permanent legislative solution to this issue.

About the AHA

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit the AHA website at www.aha.org.

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