Massachusetts officials announced the state will no longer pay for care related to serious hospital errors, or never events, joining an ever increasing list of state and private payers who have adopted nonreimbursement policies.
Massachusetts will end reimbursement for care related to 28 serious reportable events as defined by the National Quality Forum. The nonpayment policy applies to the 1.6 million patients covered through four state agencies: Medicaid, the Group Insurance Commission, the Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector Authority and the Department of Correction. The state spent about $9.6 billion on its Medicaid program in 2006, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation report. Hospitals, already reporting adverse events to the state, now will also be required to identify whether the event classifies as an NQF-defined event, officials said in a news release.
The move follows a similar announcement by New York State Medicaid, which will end reimbursement for 14 never eventssuch as wrong-site surgery and wrong-patient surgerybeginning Oct. 1, the same date Medicare will stop paying for certain hospital-acquired conditions, including three serious errors. -- by Jean DerGurahian