Public Policy

$167 billion: hospital payments forfeited for choosing not to expand Medicaid

$167 billion: Amount of federal Medicaid reimbursement payments that hospitals will forego between 2013 and 2022 in states that have opted not to expand their state programs under the 2010 Affordable Care Act. For every $1 a state spends on expanding Medicaid, $13.41 in federal funding flows into the state, according to a new report… [Read More]

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COPD Readmission Penalties Hurt Hospitals Serving Low-Income Patients

Government penalties meant to reduce COPD readmissions will unfairly impact hospitals that care for vulnerable patients, according to a report from the University of Michigan. Beginning in January 2015, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will add COPD to its list of medical conditions for which it penalizes hospitals for excessive readmissions and fines… [Read More]

Hospitalists’ Role in Health Reform, Palliative Care Evolves

Hospitalists’ Role in Health Reform Evolves

Hospital medicine guru Bob Wachter, MD, MHM, offers an optimistic view of hospitalists’ role in healthcare as reform measures continue to reshape the landscape. Addressing hospitalists at a recurring conference that he founded 18 years ago—“Management of the Hospitalized Patient”—Dr. Wachter said hospitalists should have more leverage than other healthcare providers in controlling their fate,… [Read More]

Society of Hospital Medicine’s Advocacy Efforts, Then and Now

Another year older, another year wiser. SHM’s advocacy efforts have grown immensely in the last year thanks to proactive members who understand the importance of being involved and taking action. Because of member engagement—through the online Legislative Action Center and in-person meetings with members of Congress—hospitalists are widely recognized on Capitol Hill as thoughtful resources… [Read More]

Medicare Readmissions Penalties Expected to Reach $428 Million

CMS started the third year of its Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program on October 1, with 2,610 U.S. hospitals—slightly more than in previous years—on the hook for penalties of up to 3% of their Medicare diagnosis-related grouping payments based on 30-day readmissions rates for diagnoses of myocardial infarction, heart failure, pneumonia, COPD, and elective total hip… [Read More]