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News
Hospitals hope for relief from two-midnights purgatory
By Bob Herman | August 21, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
The heavily criticized Medicare two-midnights rule involving short inpatient stays has technically been in effect for the past year. But providers, regulators and healthcare observers are not sure the rule will hold up in its current makeshift form.
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News
SCL Health's margin slips, but Medicaid expansion fuels optimism
By Bob Herman | August 19, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
SCL Health's operating margin fell slightly in the first half of its fiscal year, but the Denver-based system believes new healthcare reform efforts such as Medicaid expansion will help it in the long run.
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Information
Florida pediatricians could see relief from low Medicaid payments
By Miami Herald | August 19, 2014
After years of hearings and delays, the possible resolution this fall of a class-action lawsuit against Florida health and child-welfare officials could mean that physicans will at last receive what they consider to be adequate compensation for treating children of the poor.
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News
VA expands new care program, but providers may balk at the low rates it pays
By Virgil Dickson | August 14, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Despite expanding the scope of the Patient-Centered Community Care program to include primary care, “the dollar impact of this change remains within scope of the original contract award and requires no change to the overall contract maximums,” the VA said in a contract notice.
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News
Medicare will cover MitraClip only with registry participation: CMS
By Virgil Dickson | August 07, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
The CMS issued a national coverage with evidence development Thursday for implantation of devices to treat mitral regurgitation, a disorder in which the heart valve that separates the upper and lower chambers on the left side of the heart does not close properly.
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News
Kindred reports growth in core operations, but one-time charges drag down net income
By Beth Kutscher | August 07, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Kindred Healthcare, a Louisville, Ky.-based post-acute-care operator, on Thursday reported growth in its core operations during the second quarter from higher volume, new acquisitions and cost controls. But restructuring and other charges hurt the company's bottom line.
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News
Reform Update: Medicare offers waiver of 3-day rule for some ACOs, bundled payments
By Melanie Evans | August 06, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
The average number of days that patients spend hospitalized has gradually declined. That trend, however, is at odds with Medicare rules in place since that program began requiring a three-day hospital stay before the CMS will pay for skilled-nursing care. But now the CMS is offering a waiver of the...
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News
CMS offers higher payments for Abbott's MitraClip
By Virgil Dickson | August 06, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
The CMS has extended a $27 million peace offering to interventional cardiologists who had warned that the proposed Medicare payment rate for implanting a new device to treat patients with a potentially deadly heart valve defect is so low that hospitals and doctors will stop using it.
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News
ICD-10: Is it for clinicians or reimbursement?
By Joseph Conn | August 05, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
There's a division among physician informaticists about whether the national conversion to ICD-10 should—or even will—take place next year, despite the latest line in the sand deadline by the CMS for compliance by Oct. 1, 2015.
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Vital Signs
For-profit home health agencies blasted in new analysis
By Steven Ross Johnson | August 04, 2014
For-profit home health agencies had higher Medicare costs per patient while scoring lower in quality performance when compared with not-for-profit firms, a new analysis finds.
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