The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) consumer price index (CPI) is one of the most familiar measures in economics. The CPI is an estimate of the average change in prices that Americans pay over time for a market basket of consumer goods and services. It affects virtually everything, including, of course, the hospital market basket and factors into the calculations that adjust hospitals’ Medicare reimbursements every year.
But the accuracy of BLS’ surveys relies on strong hospital participation. The agency visits about 400 hospitals for its price surveys – and needs to maintain that level to ensure that it continues to represent the real pricing picture for hospital services. Given its importance, hospitals should strongly support the CPI’s hospital program and its efforts to get strong reliable data that can benefit the field. Getting sound hospital data in the CPI is critical to hospitals’ efforts to secure fair and accurate Medicare reimbursement and ensure the accuracy of the hospital marketbasket.
Learn how you can support the agency’s hospital surveys by clicking on: http://tinyurl.com/ky9naj2. Or e-mail BLS economist Fahad Fahimullah at firstname.lastname@example.org.