Spine Procedures, Practices and News
In the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission's annual payment policy report (pdf) to Congress, MedPAC officials recommended that Medicare payments for ASCs increase by 0.5 percent for the 2013 calendar year.
Published in Ambulatory Surgery Centers
On February 16, 2012, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued a long-awaited proposed rule to establish regulations regarding the reporting and returning of overpayments to the Medicare program (77 Fed. Reg. 9,179 (Feb. 16, 2012)). The proposed regulations at 42 C.F.R. Part 401, subpart D would implement § 6402(a) of the Affordable Care Act (Public Law 111-148), in part, by outlining the disclosure and repayment policies and procedures applicable to Medicare Part A and Part B providers and suppliers. While the proposed regulations apply only to this subset of providers and suppliers at this time, CMS notes in the preamble of the proposed rule that the statutory requirements of § 1128J(d) of the Social Security Act (regarding the obligation to report and return overpayments) continue to apply to all stakeholders despite the absence of established regulations.
Roughly 43 percent of physicians think Medicare reimbursements will go down in the near future, while only 4 percent believe they will go up, according to a survey from LocumTenens.com.
The average cost for a 180-day episode of total knee replacement for Medicare patients is $22,611, while that figure is $25,872 for patients with commercial health insurance — a 14 percent difference, according to a report from the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute.
February 21, 2012
The S&P Healthcare Economic Composite Index indicates that the average per capita cost of healthcare services covered by commercial insurance and Medicare programs increased a little more than 5 percent over the 12-months ending December 2011, according to a news release.
February 13, 2012
The American Medical Association's Specialty Society Relative Value Scale Update Committee — the group that makes influential decisions in how physicians are paid by Medicare — has added two spots to represent primary care physicians more, according to an American Medical News report.
Fourteen hospitals have agreed to pay more than $12 million combined to settle federal allegations that they defrauded Medicare by overbilling for kyphoplasty procedures, according to a news release from the Department of Justice.
Published in Spine
February 06, 2012
Daniel Berry, MD, president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, has sent a Call to Action letter for AAOS membership regarding a permanent solution to the Medicare sustainable growth rate formula.
February 03, 2012
A study in The New England Journal of Medicine may shed more light on which states and specialty medical services have contributed most to the sustainable growth rate deficit between 2002 and 2009.
January 25, 2012
Jan. 3 marked the one-year anniversary of the start of registration for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, according to a CMS news release.
Published in Health Information Technology