CMS seeks to trim $1 billion from Medicare

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Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI)
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI)
Nursing home operators would see their Medicare reimbursements slashed by 3.3%—or $1.05 billion—next year under a new proposal by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

The federal agency was quick to point out in its May 1 announcement that, combined with a 2.1% recommended market basket increase, the net result of the proposal would be payments only 1.2% lower than they were during fiscal 2009.

Regulators stressed they would simply be closing a four-year window in which providers were paid far more than originally projected after a 2006 payment adjustment for certain therapy groupings.

Providers railed against the proposal. Still, the way stock prices for numerous major nursing home chains surged on news of the CMS announcement, it was apparent that investors had been fearing much deeper proposed cuts.