15 must-reads for hospital CFOs

Here are 15 articles published by Becker's Hospital Review this month that offer insight on Medicare reimbursement, healthcare costs, capital investment strategy and more.

1. CMS releases final OPPS rule for 2017: 11 things to know
CMS released its final 2017 Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System and Ambulatory Surgical Center Payment System rule, which implements site-neutral payment provisions of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015.

2. 1,600 hospitals see payment bump under value-based purchasing: 8 things to know
The Medicare Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program, established under the ACA, is intended to encourage hospitals to provide high-quality care more efficiently by adjusting payments to hospitals based on the quality of care they provide. In fiscal year 2017, more than 1,600 hospitals will receive a positive payment adjustment under the program, while about 1,300 will receive a payment reduction, according to recently released data from CMS on nearly 3,000 U.S. hospitals.

3. CMS awards new Medicare RAC contracts
CMS awarded the next round of contracts for Medicare recovery audit contractors.

4. CDI improves ICD-10 coding and reimbursement accuracy, survey finds
Clinical documentation improvement programs can help healthcare organizations with better ICD-10 coding and reimbursement accuracy, according to a new Black Book survey of more than 900 health leaders.

5. CMS to cut Medicare reimbursement to home health agencies by $130M
CMS issued its home health prospective payment system final rule for 2017, which reduces payments to home health agencies.

6. 8 changes to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule in 2017
CMS issued its update to the 2017 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. The changes include a number of new policies that reflect a broader agencywide strategy to enhance quality, spend smarter and improve Americans' health.

7. Retired cardiologist says hospitals' quest for profits fuels higher healthcare costs
Four of the 10 hospitals that earned the largest profits from patient care services in 2013 were nonprofit, and the value of the nonprofit hospital tax exemption has grown significantly in recent years. Without action by Congress, nonprofit hospitals' earnings will continue to grow, according to a recent commentary in The American Journal of Medicine by Robert M. Doroghazi, MD.

8. CMS makes offer to clear Medicare appeals backlog: 6 things to know
In an effort to help clear the backlog of Medicare appeals, CMS offered to pay hospitals 66 percent of the net allowable amount for short-term inpatient stays in exchange for hospitals dropping their pending appeals of denied claims.

9. Fitch: ACA repeal would be credit negative for hospitals
President-elect Donald Trump intends to dismantle the ACA, a move that would be credit negative for healthcare providers, according to a Fitch Ratings report.

10. An 8-item checklist for picking the right RCM partner
Representatives from RemitDATA recently spoke with Becker's Hospital Review about areas to consider when choosing an RCM partner.

11. 5 skills CFOs should develop in the next 5 years
Healthcare organizations are transforming their traditional, insular operating structures to become more nimble and centralized. This means hospital systems need financial leaders equipped with a different skill set to achieve future success.

12. Medicare's top 15 costliest drugs in 2015
CMS recently released data identifying the costliest drugs to Medicare in 2015, and Gilead Sciences' hepatitis C treatment Harvoni topped the list.

13. CFOs name top 6 challenges in 2017
Maintaining optimal financial performance amidst regulatory uncertainty is a key challenge hospital CFOs look to tackle in 2017.

14. 3 strategies to transform your ED into an asset, not a money drain
The difficulty of optimizing emergency care without raising costs causes many hospital leaders to perceive the emergency department as a necessary evil. Identifying the best strategies for optimizing care and efficiency in the ED can be a complicated process since no two are exactly alike.

15. CFOs share key insights into their capital investment strategy
A panel of CFOs and a banking expert shared their thoughts on capital investments at Becker's 5th Annual CEO + CFO Roundtable Nov. 9.

More articles on healthcare finance:

Texas hospital closes
Northwell releases 37-point rescue plan for Brooklyn hospitals
How health systems across the US are improving price transparency

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