This week, the long-anticipated Helping Hospitals Improve Patient Care Act (H.R.5273) was introduced by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX), along with Health Subcommittee leaders Pat Tiberi (R-OH) and Jim McDermott (D-WA). Markup could be as early as next week. We are continuing to closely review every aspect of the bill, but it includes two proposals that could help address items high on the AHA’s legislative agenda. First, the bill would adjust Section 603 of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 to extend greater flexibility to hospital outpatient departments in development as of the date of enactment. Second, the bill would allow accounting for socio-economic status in the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program. This proposal represents progress on an issue we’ve raised with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for years. We’re pleased that the Committee has advanced a solution. While there is still a ways to go, we will continue working with the Committee to both improve patient care and advance health in America.   

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