Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) introduced legislation that expands the definition and required services of publicly owned or operated hospitals and would increase the allotment of Medicaid disproportionate-share hospital funding they could receive.
To qualify, hospitals would first have to meet certain expanded requirements. Under the bill, hospitals would have to show they are owned or operated by a state or municipal government, operate an accredited burn center and Level 1 trauma center, own at least five community health centers in their county and have fewer than 450 inpatient beds.
By and large, these types of safety net hospitals take in poorer patients who typically have more acuteand costlymedical needs. The issues are related to hospitals carrying a pretty heavy burden when it comes to indigent care and having a role when it comes to larger national needs, a Bayh aide said.
Facilities meeting those requirements would be eligible for DSH payment increases of up to 175% of the cost of delivering hospital services. -- by Matthew DoBias
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