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CMS Declines To Act On Charge Compression In 2008 Outpatient Proposal

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

CMS wants to examine hospital outpatient charge data more carefully before making any Medicare payment adjustments to remedy charge compression, the agency explains in its 2008 outpatient payment proposed 1rule

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Outpatient Packaging Policy Could Impact High-Cost Equipment Purchases

CMS' decision to broadly expand "packaging" of outpatient service payments in 2008 might affect hospitals' decisions to purchase or keep expensive capital equipment, the agency says

Outpatient Packaging Policy Could Impact High-Cost Equipment Purchases

CMS' decision to broadly expand "packaging" of outpatient service payments in 2008 might affect hospitals' decisions to purchase or keep expensive capital equipment, the agency says

MedPAC urges fix for charge compression

CMS should immediately correct for charge compression, a payment calculation phenomenon that generally leads to the undervaluing of high-cost technology, says the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission in Sept. 14 1comments to the agency. Despite similar pressure from device stakeholders to use regression analysis for a near-term fix to the problem, CMS said in its July proposal for 2008 hospital outpatient payments that it wants to further study the approach (2"The Gray Sheet" July 23, 2007, p. 17). "The issue of charge compression is serious enough that CMS should move forward with this imperfect solution," MedPAC writes. CMS will finalize the decision by Nov. 1

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