Hospitals wanting to participate in the CMS' hospital quality initiative must sign up by June 1 and should be ready to transmit data to the agency by July 1, the CMS announced. The guideline stems from the new Medicare reform law and pegs hospital reimbursement to participation in the initiative. Hospitals that participate will receive a full-inflation Medicare update in fiscal 2005; the update for hospitals that don't participate will be full inflation minus 0.4 percentage points. The initiative will look at 10 measures related to three common medical conditions -- heart attack, heart failure and pneumonia. Hospitals will be required to submit data on all patients, not just Medicare patients. More information about the initiative is available at the CMS Web site. At deadline, the guideline was not available online. -- by Tony Fong
CMS sets deadlines for hospital quality initiative
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