Lawmakers are squabbling over how fast the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services should implement its new policy restricting the types of cases that qualify for outlier payments. In a letter to CMS Administrator Tom Scully, 10 members of the House, led by Rep. Curt Weldon (R-Pa.), argued that the CMS should create a transition period rather than implement the policy immediately, because many hospitals would be hurt by the changes. The new policy is partly the result of an ongoing federal investigation of Tenet Healthcare Corp. It has not been made effective, and a CMS spokeswoman said today no timeline has been established. Responding to Weldon's request, Rep. Pete Stark (D-Calif.) in a letter to colleagues said a transition period would "tacitly condone potentially fraudulent behavior and would prevent payment increases to well-deserving hospitals." -- by Jeff Tieman
Outlier policy implementation date up in the air
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