Subscribe

Inside DC

March 5, 2014 -

96 HOUR RULE BILLS; COSPONSORS NEEDED


Responding to concerns from Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs), the U.S. House of Representatives introduced the bipartisan bill, Critical Access Hospital Relief Act of 2014, H.R. 3991. Last week, the U.S. Senate followed suit with companion legislation S. 2037. These bills would remove the 96-hour physician certification requirement as a condition of payment for CAHs.
 
Specifically, this AHA-supported bill amends the Social Security Act to remove the condition of payment but leaves the condition of participation intact. If enacted, a physician would not be required to state that the patient will be discharged or transferred in less than 96 hours in order for the CAH to be paid on that particular claim. CAHs would continue to need to meet the other certification requirements that apply to all hospitals as well as the condition of participation requiring a 96-hour annual average length of stay.
 
Contact Your Senators and Representative Today!
WSHA recommends sending your request to the Chief of Staff or Legislative Director, Health Legislative Assistant, and the District/State Director.  Please click here for a directory of Congressional Offices and staff. 
 
Message for Senators Murray and Cantwell:
“I am writing today to urge you to cosponsor S. 2037 – the Critical Access Hospital Relief Act. The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services recently released guidance that threatens the ability of Critical Access Hospitals to provide care to their community members.  While CAHs typically maintain an annual average of 96 hours per patient, we offer some medical services that require stays longer than 96 hours. According to CMS’s recent change, a physician will need to reasonably certify the beneficiary’s stay will be less than 96 hours. This is an unreasonable change and does not take into consideration what is best for the patient.
 
If we are forced to eliminate these ‘96-hour plus’ services, the resulting financial pressure on us would severely affect our ability to operate and care for beneficiaries in rural communities.
 
Can I count on your support of S. 2037?”
 
Message for Representatives (except McMorris Rodgers who is a cosponsor):
“I am writing today to urge you to cosponsor H.R. 3991 – the Critical Access Hospital Relief Act. The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services recently released guidance that threatens the ability of Critical Access Hospitals to provide care to their community members.  While CAHs typically maintain an annual average of 96 hours per patient, we offer some medical services that require stays longer than 96 hours. According to CMS’s recent change, a physician will need to reasonably certify the beneficiary’s stay will be less than 96 hours. This is an unreasonable change and does not take into consideration what is best for the patient.
 
If we are forced to eliminate these ‘96-hour plus’ services, the resulting financial pressure on us would severely affect our ability to operate and care for beneficiaries in rural communities.
 
Can I count on your support of H.R. 3991?”
 
Reporting Back: Please let Chelene Whiteaker know when you hear back from the offices. (Chelenew@wsha.org or 206-216-2545)


return to top