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MedPAC’s latest report urges SNF payment cuts

March 17, 2012
by Patricia Sheehan
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In its annual report to Congress, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) on Thursday recommended reducing Medicare reimbursements to underperforming skilled nursing facilities.

The commission’s recommendations include: the elimination of the market basket update for 2013; a redistribution of SNF payments away from intensive therapy care that is unrelated to patient care needs and toward medically complex care; rebasing of payments in 2014 with an initial reduction of 4 percent; and reduced payments to SNFs with higher rates of rehospitalization.

American Health Care Association (AHCA) President Mark Parkinson in a statement expressed the association’s displeasure with the recommendations. “While AHCA and MedPAC agree that reducing rehospitalization rates will produce savings for the overall Medicare program, we differ in how we reach that goal,” said Parkinson. “AHCA proposes incentives to drive change, while MedPAC recommends penalties for providers with higher rates of hospital readmissions.”

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