RHCs and FQHCs Get a Rate Increase

Medicare rural health centers (RHCs) and federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) can expect to see payment updates in 2010 thanks to an increase in the Medicare Economic Index (MEI), according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

CMS is increasing payment rates for services provided to Medicare patients on or after Jan. 1, 2010 in an RHC or FQHC.

RHCs will see a 1.2 percent increase over 2009 rates. The RHC upper payment limit per visit will increase from $76.84 to $77.76.

The urban FQHC upper payment limit per visit will increase from $119.29 to $125.72, and the maximum Medicare payment limit per rural FQHC will increase from $102.58 to $108.81. This is also a 1.2 percent increase over 2009 rates, in addition to a $5 increase as mandated by the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008 (MIPPA).

The official instruction regarding this change may be viewed on the CMS Web site.

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