'Never event' Medicare reimbursement rules now in effect

Share this article:
As of this month, Medicare no longer is reimbursing healthcare facilities for "reasonably preventable" medical errors. Also, hospitals are not allowed to charge patients directly for medical care resulting from such errors.

Preventable conditions that will no longer be reimbursed include falls, certain post-surgery infections, pressure ulcers, and infections resulting from improper catheter use. Three so-called "never events," or preventable errors, are also on the list. These are air embolisms, incompatible blood and objects left in the body after surgery. The move is expected to save only $21 million of Medicare's $110 billion annual outlay, but it represents the Bush administration's efforts to reform the country's medical payment system, according to The New York Times.

In related news, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Wednesday announced that it will publish most of the edits utilized in its Medically Unlikely Edit (MUE) program to improve the accuracy of claims payments. These edits will apply to claims made under Medicare Part B.
Share this article:

More in News

'Minor' issues at the nursing home can cause disastrous care transitions, expert warns

'Minor' issues at the nursing home can cause ...

What may appear to be minor administrative problems in a nursing home - a fax machine locked away at night or no one designated to copy paperwork - can cause ...

Long-term care facilities approach 80% worker flu vaccination rate after handing power ...

Fourteen long-term care facilities in Pennsylvania dramatically increased their staff flu vaccination rate by having a regional pharmacy take over the process, according to a report issued Thursday by the Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research (AHQR).

RACs were 'most improved' healthcare auditors for getting back money in 2013, ...

Medicare Recovery Audit Contractors dramatically stepped up their overpayment recoveries last year, returning nearly $487 million more to the government than they did in 2012, according to a new report from a federal watchdog agency.