CMS Proposes 2016 Payment Rate Updates for Hospice

CMS Proposes 2016 Payment Rate Updates for Hospice

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule (CMS-1629-P) to update 2016 Medicare payment rates and the wage index for hospices. The 2016 proposal would give hospices an estimated 1.3 percent ($200 million) increase in their payments. According to “2016 Hospice NPRM CMS-1629-P CMS Updates to the Wage Index and Payment Rates for the Medicare Hospice Benefit,” released on April 30, the increase reflects:

  • The distributional effects of the 1.8 percent proposed 2016 hospice payment update percentage ($290 million increase);
  • The use of updated wage index data and the phase-out of the wage index budget neutrality adjustment factor (-0.7 percent/$120 million decrease); and
  • The proposed implementation of the new Office of Management and Budget Core Based Statistical Areas delineations for 2016 hospice wage index with a one-year transition (0.2 percent/$30 million increase).

The elimination of the wage index budget neutrality adjustment factor is not a policy change, but part of a seven-year phase-out.

For more information, see the April 30 Federal Register, Public Inspection Desk, “Special Filings,” and CMS’ Hospice Center. Public comments are accepted until June 29.

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Michelle Dick
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Michelle Dick

Executive Editor at AAPC
Michelle A. Dick has been executive editor for AAPC for over seven years. Prior to her work at AAPC, she was editor-in-chief at Eli Research and Element K Journals, and disk ad coordinator, web designer/developer, and graphic artist at White Directory Publishers, Inc. Dick has a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design from the State University of New York - Buffalo State and is a member of the Flower City Professional Coders in Rochester, N.Y.
Michelle Dick
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About Has 134 Posts

Michelle A. Dick has been executive editor for AAPC for over seven years. Prior to her work at AAPC, she was editor-in-chief at Eli Research and Element K Journals, and disk ad coordinator, web designer/developer, and graphic artist at White Directory Publishers, Inc. Dick has a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design from the State University of New York - Buffalo State and is a member of the Flower City Professional Coders in Rochester, N.Y.

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