Docs Cheer Medicare’s OK to Off-Site Hospital Care

by Michele G. Sullivan: For Complete Post, Click Here…

ngd- This is a welcome realization by CMS…

CMS to reimburse hospital-level care at home and in ambulatory surgical centers.

Recent regulatory actions by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to pay for hospital care outside of traditional inpatient sites were welcomed by some physician groups.

The policy updates will reimburse hospitals to provide in-home, hospital-level telehealth care for patients with acute conditions and will pay for both inpatient and outpatient care in ambulatory surgical centers (ASC) temporarily designated as hospitals.

The actions allow health systems to safely care for these patients in nontraditional locations, away from patients being treated for COVID-19. The new programs will also conserve critical bed space for COVID-19 patients who need immediate treatment.

The policies expand CMS’s Hospital Without Walls program, established by federal mandate in March. Both the Acute Hospital Care At Home and the ASC flexibility program target patients with any of more than 60 acute conditions and who would otherwise require inpatient admission. These conditions include asthma, congestive heart failure, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, among others, CMS noted in a press release.

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