MedPAC recommends Congress give long-term care hospitals a break

Share this article:

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission did not recommend to Congress a proposed moratorium on payment to long-term care hospitals within existing acute-care facilities, calling such a move premature. Members of Congress had questioned the unusually high payments such facilities receive from Medicare.

The commission unanimously agreed that long-term care hospitals need to distinguish themselves from skilled nursing facilities to justify such payments. The commission suggested defining LTC hospitals by "criteria that ensure patients are medically complex and have a good chance of improvement," averaging a 25-day length of stay.

There were 318 long-term care hospitals in the U.S. in 2003, up from 105 in 1993, according the MedPAC. Medicare payments to such hospitals reached $1.9 billion in 2001, up from $398 million in 1993.

Congress is not legally bound to accept MedPAC's recommendations.

Share this article:

More in News

Skilled nursing facility trends contribute to improved Medicare outlook, Congressional report says

The Medicare trust fund is on track to remain solvent until 2030, trustees of the program stated in a Congressional report released Monday. This improved outlook is due in part to revised expectations about the case mix in skilled nursing facilities.

House bill would define, promote coordinated long-term care services

A bill introduced in the House of Representatives would target improved care coordination for seniors, also adding it under the Older Americans Act.

Seize the day: Tech Awards deadline is tomorrow

Seize the day: Tech Awards deadline is tomorrow

The final countdown has begun: Long-term care providers have less than 48 hours to enter the third annual McKnight's Excellence in Technology Awards. Submissions will be accepted through July 30.