In comments on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS’) fiscal year (FY) 2016 Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) proposed rule, America’s Essential Hospitals urged the agency to ensure essential hospitals are not unfairly disadvantaged for serving the most vulnerable.
In the rule, CMS proposes reducing Medicare disproportionate share hospital (DSH) payments by $1.3 billion compared to last year’s amount. The association cautioned CMS about the sustainability of these large cuts, which will become larger as the national rate of uninsurance decreases in future years. America’s Essential Hospitals also urged CMS to use reliable data sources that will allow the agency to accurately target Medicare DSH payments to hospitals with high levels of uncompensated care.
Additionally, the rule proposes updates to the Hospital-Acquired Condition Reduction Program, Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program, Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program, and Inpatient Quality Reporting Program. The association urged CMS to ensure measures and methodologies in these programs are adjusted for sociodemographic status to accurately reflect quality of care and improved patient outcomes and avoid creating bias against any particular type of hospital.
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