November 30, 2019

CMS Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule Increases Value for Minimally Invasive SI Joint Spine Fusion

In the 2020 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule, released on Nov. 1, CMS finalized a work RVU of 12.13 for CPT code 27279, Arthrodesis, sacroiliac joint, percutaneous or minimally invasive (indirect visualization), with image guidance, includes obtaining bone graft when performed, and placement of transfixing device. The current (2019) work RVU for 27279 is 9.03 so the increase is 3.10 or approximately 33%.  In addition, the Total RVUS for CPT 27279 changed from 2019 to 2020 from 19.99 to 25.34. These increases have long been advocated by ISASS and other stakeholders. ISASS had submitted comments to CMS on the 2020 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule in September, where CMS indicated a proposed value of 9.03 work RVU. At […]
October 29, 2019

CMS Issues New Medicare Reimbursement Penalties to Hospitals for CY 2020

On October 1, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) initiated a series of penalties on U.S. hospitals under the Hospital Readmission Reduction Program for CY 2020. Overall, Medicare cut payments to 2,583 hospitals under the initiative, which seeks to reduce the number of patients who return for a second stay within a month. The severity and broad application of the penalties, which Medicare estimates will cost hospitals $563 million over a year, follows the trend of the past few years. Of the 3,129 general hospitals evaluated in the Hospital Readmission Reduction Program, 83% received a penalty, which will be deducted from each payment for a Medicare patient stay over the fiscal year from October 1, 2019-October 1,2020. The penalties […]
October 29, 2019

CMS Issues a Final Rule on Discharge Planning Rule, Supports Interoperability and Patient Preferences

On September 29, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule that aims to empower patients to make informed decisions about their care as they are discharged from acute care into post-acute care (PAC), a process called “discharge planning.”  In addition to improving quality by improving these care transitions, the rule attempts to support CMS’ interoperability efforts by promoting the seamless exchange of patient information between health care settings and ensuring that a patient’s health care information follows them after discharge from a hospital or PAC provider. The final rule revises hospital discharge planning requirements for long-term care hospitals (LTCHs) and inpatient rehabilitation facilities, inpatient psychiatric facilities, children’s hospitals, cancer hospitals, (IRFs), critical access hospitals (CAHs), […]
October 29, 2019

CMS Issues Omnibus Burden Reduction Final Rule

On September 26, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issues a final rule on The Omnibus Burden Reduction (Conditions of Participation) Final Rule. The intent of the rule is to strengthen patient safety by removing unnecessary, obsolete, or excessively burdensome health regulations on hospitals and other healthcare providers. The rule seeks to advance CMS’s Patients over Paperwork initiative by saving providers an estimated 4.4 million hours previously spent on paperwork annually, with overall total provider savings projected to be approximately $8 billion over the next 10 years, giving doctors more time to spend with their patients. CMS conducted a comprehensive review of regulations to determine where changes to obsolete, duplicative, or unnecessary requirements could be made to improve healthcare delivery. […]