Senate passes FY 2014 budget resolution    03/25/2013
The U.S. Senate Saturday voted 50-49 to pass a fiscal year 2014 budget resolution that would replace sequester cuts with $1.85 trillion in savings over 10 years through an equal combination of tax revenue increases and spending cuts. The cuts would include $275 billion in unspecified health care reductions, aimed at “further realigning incentives throughout the system, cutting waste and fraud, and seeking greater engagement across the health care system.” Earlier last week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a separate FY 2014 budget resolution that would cut more than $4.6 trillion in government spending over the next 10 years. About $2.7 trillion of the spending reductions would come from health care.
CMS to host calls on ICD-10 preparation   03/25/2013
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on Thursday, April 18, at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Time, will host a national provider call on transitioning to the ICD-10 coding system. The call will provide a basic overview as well as strategies for planning and preparing for ICD-10 implementation. To register, see the call notice. Hospitals and other entities covered by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act must convert to the ICD-10 coding system by Oct. 1, 2014. In addition, CMS contractor National Government Services will host a series of listening sessions to gather feedback from providers on end-to-end testing of ICD-10 and other HIPAA administrative simplification requirements. For more information, see the CMS website.
Reminder: Members-only Town Hall webcast Tuesday   03/25/2013
Tune in for the next AHA members-only Town Hall Interactive webcast Tuesday, March 26, at 4 p.m. Eastern Time. AHA President and CEO Rich Umbdenstock, Executive Vice President Rick Pollack and Senior Vice President of Federal Relations Tom Nickels will update members on the latest activity in Washington, D.C. In addition, AHA Assistant General Counsel Lawrence Hughes and Vice President for Policy Ashley Thompson will report on the latest regulations and activities involving Recovery Audit Contractors. Hosted by AHA leaders, members-only Town Hall Interactive webcasts focus on advocacy and other important developments in the hospital and health care field. To participate in the 2013 webcasts, register here.  For more information, call (800) 424-4301.
AHA webinar Tuesday to review latest RAC survey data   03/25/2013
Hospitals are invited to review results from the AHA's latest RACTrac survey, learn about updates to questions in the survey and discuss recent recovery audit contractor policy developments during a webinar on Tuesday, March 26 at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. The free web-based survey helps gauge the impact of Medicare recovery audit contractors and helps AHA advocate for needed changes to the program. The latest results include new data on RAC medical necessity reviews and appeals. For more on the AHA's RACTrac initiative, visit