Medicare payment group changes name

A Medicare payment watchdog group saddled with huge case backlogs and heavily criticized for causing delays in resolving reimbursement issues has changed its name and location on the web.

The Council for Medicare Integrity, formerly the American Coalition for Healthcare Claims Integrity, will continue to support the recovery audit contractor program and will also work with hospitals and physicians to help lower improper payments, the group said in announcing its new name and website, www.medicareintegrity.org

Long-term care providers are among the professionals critical of the RAC process. Major provider groups have blamed the RAC program for causing a “tremendous burden on hospitals and the appeals process,” most recently on RAC constituents pushing back on new short-stay provisions. In early February, hospital industry groups said they'd rather the government reform the RAC program than simply throw more money at fixing an onerous backlog of more than 800,000 Medicare appeals cases.

Council for Medicare Integrity spokeswoman Kristin Walter said the name change symbolizes the group's evolution.

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