Resistance Grows Toward Hospitals' Facility Fees
Washington Post report.
Medicare pays at least $1 billion annually for facility fees, which are separate charges from bills for physician services, according to the report. Hospitals that own physician practices and outpatient clinics can add these fees to cover physicians' use of their facilities.
Sen. Kevin Mullin (R-Vt.) introduced a bill last year to halt hospitals from suddenly imposing facility fees, but the legislation failed. The House also introduced legislation last year that included a provision to trim roughly $6.8 billion in Medicare costs over 10 years by honing in on facility fees, but that bill also failed in the Senate.
If Medicare cuts payments for facility fees, private payors would "almost certainly" follow suit, according to the report. However, insurers aren't waiting for a legislative halt to show more resistance toward facility fees. Dolores Mitchell, executive director of Massachusetts' Group Insurance Commission, said she encourages health plans to resist reimbursing higher prices for equal patient visits or services.
More Articles on Facility Fees:Hospital Facility Fees on the Rise as Employed Physician Bases Grow
Patients Fail to Pay, Understand Financial Obligations
Payors Report More Use of Facility Fees at Hospital-Owned Urgent Care Centers
© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2014. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies by clicking here.
To receive the latest hospital and health system business and legal news and analysis from Becker's Hospital Review, sign-up for the free Becker's Hospital Review E-weekly by clicking here.
New from Becker's Hospital Review