CMS Leaves Hospitals In Dark On Readmissions Penalties

Law360, New York (May 1, 2013, 6:30 PM EDT) -- Medicare's new payment policies stayed surprisingly silent on whether hospitals will face readmissions penalties when patients quickly and unexpectedly return for problems that have nothing to do with their original reasons for treatment, setting up a showdown with health care providers, experts say.

In a 1,424-page proposed rule unveiled last week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services left unaddressed whether it would trim reimbursements for unplanned readmissions for injuries or illnesses unrelated to patients' initial conditions.

"This is a huge policy issue that remains outstanding,"...
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