CMS issues FY 2014 payment update for inpatient psychiatric facilities   07/30/2013
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services yesterday issued a notice increasing prospective payment rates for hospital-based and freestanding Medicare inpatient psychiatric facilities by an average 2.3% ($115 million overall) for fiscal year 2014, beginning Oct. 1. The increase reflects a 2.6% market basket update minus a 0.5 percentage point productivity reduction and a 0.1 percentage point reduction required by law, plus a 0.3 percentage point increase in the expected proportion of outlier payments, among other adjustments.
Health care inflation lowest in nearly 50 years   07/30/2013
Prices for personal consumption expenditures on health care goods and services rose just 1.1% over the12 months ending in May, the slowest rate in nearly 50 years, according to a blog post yesterday by Alan Krueger, chairman of the president’s Council of Economic Advisers. “The slowdown in PCE health care inflation has been widespread, with important contributions from two large components: hospital and nursing home services (which comprise 42% of total health care expenditures) and outpatient services (which comprise 34% of total health care expenditures),” he wrote. “…In sum, data from across the economy – covering consumers, government and private employers – point to the same conclusion: health care cost growth has slowed. A mounting body of research finds that structural changes are driving a substantial part of the recent slowdown in health care cost growth, suggesting that the trend may persist.”
Task Force recommends annual lung cancer screening for at-risk smokers   07/30/2013
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force today recommended annual screenings for lung cancer using low-dose computed tomography for people aged 55-80 who have smoked the equivalent of a pack of cigarettes daily for 30 years. The panel will accept comments on the draft recommendation through Aug. 26. It assigned a “B” grade to the recommendation, which means all copays and deductibles for the screenings would be waived under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. “By screening those at high risk, we can find lung cancer at earlier stages when it is more likely to be treatable,” said Task Force Chair Virginia Moyer, M.D., cautioning that screening “is not an alternative to quitting smoking.”
AHA seeks HAVE Award nominees   07/30/2013
The AHA seeks nominations through Sept. 26 for its 2014 Hospital Awards for Volunteer Excellence. Hospital CEOs and directors of volunteer services are encouraged to nominate outstanding volunteer programs in the areas of community service, fundraising, in-service needs or challenges, and community outreach/collaboration. For more information, and to view or submit a nomination form, click here. The awards will be presented on May 5, 2014 at the AHA Annual Membership Meeting in Washington, D.C.
AHRMM honors health care supply chain leaders   07/30/2013
The AHA’s Association for Healthcare Resource & Materials Management this week presented members with awards for leadership and innovation at its annual conference in San Diego. Jay Kirkpatrick, a certified materials management professional, received the association’s highest honor, the George R. Gossett Leadership Award, for extraordinary leadership and commitment to AHRMM and the health care supply chain. The Intermountain Healthcare Supply Chain Organization received the 2013 Award for Healthcare Supply Chain Innovation for a forward-thinking overhaul of its procurement structure.