BY VIRGIL DICKSON: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will give inpatient psychiatric facilities a modest 1% Medicaid reimbursement increase next year of $45 million.
That’s less than half of the 2.2%, $100 million increase in Medicare reimbursement they received this fiscal year.
The agency made the change via a notice rather than a rulemaking on Wednesday, and will not accept comments on the decision. The CMS said rulemaking was unnecessary because the updates don’t reflect any “substantive” changes in policy.
Medicare payments to inpatient psychiatric facilities were estimated to be $4.4 billion in 2014, according the most recent federal data available. That’s up slightly from $3.9 billion in 2008. (read more)
BY ZACHARY TRACER: The turmoil around the Affordable Care Act has created heartburn for health insurers. The industry is betting that a different government program will soothe its ills.
Big insurers have retreated from Obamacare’s individual market, where fighting over the future of the health law has contributed to financial losses. They’re focusing instead on Medicare Advantage, a politically popular program that’s being embraced by a growing population of older Americans. (read more)
BY JIM BORLAND: Social Security is here with tools and information to help you secure today and tomorrow. Did you know that you can pay your Medicare premiums online? If your bank offers the option to pay your bills online, you can use their service to pay for your Medicare premiums bill from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. (read more)