The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) just released the final inpatient prospective payment system (IPPS) rule for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012. While covering reimbursements for approximately 3,400 acute care hospitals, the final rule also updates reimbursement policies for more than 400 long-term care hospitals (LTCHs).
According to CMS, total Medicare operating payments to acute care hospitals for inpatient services will increase by 1.1 percent ($1.13 billion) for FY 2012, compared with FY 2011. Medicare reimbursements to LTCHs during the same period are projected to increase by 2.5 percent ($126 million).
The final IPPS rule also contains provisions designed to strengthen the relationship between reimbursements and quality of care. For example, it expands quality measures that must be reported under the Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting Program by focusing on prevention of healthcare-related infections and readmissions.
Also, the final rule sets forth initial readmissions measures that will be included in a forthcoming Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program, as mandated by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The program will apply to rates of readmissions for heart failure, acute myocardial infarction (heart attack) and pneumonia. CMS indicated that it plans to continue the implementation of this program in future rulemaking. The program itself is set to begin in FY 2013.
The final IPPS rule takes effect on October 1, will be published in the Federal Register on August 18.
However, you can download a copy of the rule now. [PDF, 4.09MB, 1492 pgs]