Healthgrades Reveals Best Hospitals Award for 2020 Healthgrades last week announced the recipients of the America's 50, 100 and 250 Best Hospitals Awards™ — which represent the top 1, 2 and 5 percent of hospitals in the nation.  Healthgrades analyzed the performance of nearly 4,500 hospitals...

New Surprise Billing Legislation Emerges; Committee Action This Week The House Ways and Means Committee released it much anticipated Surprise Billing legislation late last week.  The 200+ page document does not include the benchmark provision that was championed by the insurance industry and adopted into other...

Trump Administration Proposes Medicaid Block Grants CMS has announced the agency's anticipated Medicaid block grant demonstration titled the "Healthy Adult Opportunity", details of which appear in a 56-page CMS letter to state Medicaid directors. The HAO is available to all states and will be initially approved...

EHR Company Epic Comes Out Swinging Against HHS' Interoperability Rules, Urges Hospitals to Oppose Rules Epic, the giant electronic health record company, threatened a lawsuit against HHS' Office of National Coordinator following a push for hospital executives to send comments to HHS opposing the proposed regulation...

MedPAC Says Increase Hospital Pay 2%, Decrease Home Health 7%, Inpatient Rehab 5% The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission made recommendations last week for hospitals, physicians, and post-acute care facilities for FY21 increases and reductions in Medicare payments. For inpatient hospitals, MedPAC recommended a 2 percent increase...

GAO Finds Ineligible Hospitals in the 340B Program; Recommends Changes A new Government Accountability Office found that inadequate oversight by HRSA has led to some hospitals participating in the 340B drug discount program that were not eligible. Auditors recommended a number of ways for HRSA to...

January 6, 2020 - Happy New Year! Over 300 Drugs Saw Price Hikes January 1 More than 330 drugs had their prices raised on Jan. 1, 2020, with more expected to rise over the course of the month, according to healthcare research firm 3 Axis Advisors. Most of the...

(NOTE: This Weekly Report Will Next Publish Monday, January 6.  Happy Holidays!) Congress Gives Health Care Many Holiday Gifts -- A delay in the $4 billion Medicaid Disproportionate Share payment cuts -- No surprise billing legislation -- Repeal the Health Insurance Tax in 2021 These are just three of many...

Some Good News to End the Year It has been a challenging year in federal health policy. Although much of the focus has been on reforming the pharmaceutical sector, hospitals, physicians and other providers have been fighting regulatory and legislative battles over payment streams.  Several developments...

Deal Reached on Surprise Billing Between House and Senate Committees The Senate Health Committee and House Energy and Commercy Commitee announced the agreement Sunday in a news release, but omitted details about the precise mechanism for resolving disputes between insurers and health care providers when out-of-network...