Provider groups oppose MedPAC recommendation for FY 2010 nursing home rate freeze

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Long-term care providers are participating in 'most ambitious test' of bundled payments, CMS announc
Long-term care providers are participating in 'most ambitious test' of bundled payments, CMS announc
The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) recommended to Congress Tuesday that skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities not receive a reimbursement rate increase for fiscal year 2010. The recommendation angered nursing home providers.

The freeze would "undermine U.S. seniors care needs, jeopardize quality, destabilize the long-term care sector, and [are] directly at odds with the economic stimulus objectives," American Health Care Association President and CEO Bruce Yarwood said.

Alan Rosenbloom, president of the Alliance for Quality Nursing Home Care, said that the recommendation is "seriously flawed," noting that Medicare helps to prop up inadequate Medicaid funding.

Besides freezing skilled nursing facility and rehab facility reimbursement rates, MedPAC recommended slicing 5.5% from home health services in FY 2010. Long-term care hospitals would see a 1.6% reimbursement increase. (McKnight's, 1/12). Congress has declined to follow MedPAC's recommendations in recent years.