On Demand Webinar | Basic | Coronavirus
<div>As COVID-19 pandemic materialized and spread, it has changed so much about healthcare delivery, how we prepare, and how we go about our daily lives.&nbsp; We are reminded how fragile our health and the healthcare system can be. As an i...
On Demand Webinar | Intermediate | Coronavirus
The COVID-19 pandemic is ravaging healthcare facilities, which is partly due to a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other critical supplies.&nbsp; Vulnerabilities in the supply chain have been exposed. As such, hospitals shoul...
On Demand Webinar | Basic | Coronavirus
In the wake of COVID-19, many healthcare providers that traditionally relied on physical office space had to quickly adapt their operations to meet regulatory guidelines and ensure the safety of their employees by shifting to remote work. O...
On Demand Webinar | Basic | Coronavirus
Relying on aggressive financial policies and collection tactics won't help your organization adapt to the "patient as payer" model, especially after the pandemic.&nbsp; Instead, you need a strategy that helps patients easily navigate the fi...
On Demand Webinar | Basic | Coronavirus
<div>The COVID-19 pandemic is causing major economic disruptions and has left many health systems struggling to find ways to drive cash supply and forecast budgets. The ability to pivot and prepare a financial operating plan that provides a...
News | Coronavirus

Hospital groups demand withdrawal of new requirement to report COVID-19 data

News | Coronavirus

Hospital groups demand withdrawal of new requirement to report COVID-19 data

Hospital advocates urged immediate withdrawal of new requirements to immediately begin reporting test results and other COVID-19 data to HHS.

Emergency regulations from CMS require hospitals and critical access hospitals to report results daily, including:

  • The number of confirmed or suspected COVID-19-positive patients
  • The number of occupied ICU beds
  • Availability of “essential supplies and equipment,” such as ventilators and personal protective equipment (PPE)

Many hospitals already voluntarily report the information, but CMS said doing so will be required “to support broader surveillance of COVID-19.” The new rules make reporting a requirement of participation in Medicare and Medicaid. Hospitals not meeting the requirements will be warned and then face loss of Medicare payments and possible termination from Medicare and Medicaid eligibility.

But the new requirements came as a surprise to hospital advocacy groups.

“…a new heavy-handed regulatory approach put forward by the administration threatens to expel hospitals from the Medicare program,” Rick Pollack, president and CEO of the American Hospital Association, said in a written statement. “This disturbing move, announced in final form without consultation, or the opportunity to provide feedback through appropriate administrative procedures prior to it becoming effective, could jeopardize access to care and leave patients and communities without vital health services from their local hospital during a pandemic.”

Similarly, Chip Kahn, president and CEO of the Federation of American Hospitals, wrote in a tweet that the new requirements were “not vetted” and “blindsides industry.”

Both organizations urged immediate reversal of the new rule.

In March, the Trump administration wrote all hospitals to request the results of COVID-19 tests performed in their in-house laboratories, seeking to better understand and track disease patterns.

“CMS’s new rules require such reporting of test results in order to ensure a more complete picture in the nationwide surveillance of COVID-19, as well as a more efficient allocation of PPE and other vital supplies,” a CMS release states.

Additional requirements included

Other COVID-19 requirements of the rule include:

  • Testing nursing home staff for COVID-19
  • Offering tests to nursing home residents
  • Reporting of daily COVID-19 test results by laboratories

Both labs and nursing homes face fines for not meeting the reporting requirements. All labs testing for COVID-19, including hospital labs, were given a three-week grace period to begin reporting the required data.

CMS is also revising previous policies that paid for repeated COVID-19 testing of Medicare beneficiaries without practitioner orders. Going forward, each beneficiary can receive one COVID-19 test without a physician or other clinician order, with orders required for subsequent tests.

“This change helps ensure that beneficiaries receive appropriate medical attention if they need multiple tests,” the release states. “It is also designed to stop fraudsters from performing or billing for unnecessary tests.”

 Medicare will pay for tests ordered by a pharmacist or other healthcare professional authorized under state law. Medicare usually pays for services of pharmacists and certain other healthcare professionals only when they have an arrangement with a physician or other billing practitioner. During the public health emergency, Medicare will continue to pay for tests ordered without such an arrangement.

CMS is accepting comment on the new rule for 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. Details on submitting comments are located in the rule.

About the Author

Rich Daly, HFMA Senior Writer and Editor,

is based in the Washington, D.C., office. Follow Rich on Twitter: @rdalyhealthcare


Related Articles | Coronavirus

Column | Healthcare Business Trends

6 common ground healthcare issues that may help in overcoming discord

In the nation's current political climate and the prevailing partisan divide, healthcare is home to six issues where there is political common ground that could lead to bipartisan solutions.

Trend | Supply Chain Management

Reimagining the healthcare supply chain to bolster resilience and efficiency

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare supply chain leaders are considering new approaches to sourcing, inventory management, analytics and technology.

News | Coronavirus

Hoping to avoid being overwhelmed, safety-net hospitals urge COVID-19 prevention

Safety-net hospitals are urging the public to take COVID-19-prevention steps to keep from overwhelming the facilities.

Comment Letter | Coronavirus

HFMA Comments on CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Reporting Requirements

HFMA presents its comment letter to HHS containing key questions related to the September 19 CARES Act Provider Relief Fund reporting requirements.