CMS: Hospices to receive $180 million more from Medicare next year

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Hospices will reap a 1.1% increase in Medicare payments in fiscal year 2014, according to a proposed rule issued by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

As a result of the increase, hospices would see Medicare payments rise about $180 million, according to CMS. The 1.1% increase involves a per diem rate increase of 1.8%, minus 0.7% due to “updated wage data” and some payment reductions mandated by law.

The rule also clarifies some Medicare coding matters.

“CMS clarifies that hospice providers should not use certain non-specific diagnoses or diagnoses that, under coding guidelines, are not principal diagnoses; instead, hospices should code the principal diagnosis using the underlying condition that is the main focus of the patient's care,” according to a fact sheet.

The proposed rule was issued Tuesday and will be published in the Federal Register on May 13. The full document is available here.