July 8 The U.S. government agency in charge of
health insurance for seniors on Monday proposed a 1.8 percent
rate increase for hospital outpatient departments in fiscal
2014, as it moves to rein in reimbursements relative to rising
The proposed rule by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid
Services is in line with expectations, UBS analyst A.J. Rice
said in a note to clients. Reimbursement for outpatient services
represents about 20 percent of a typical hospital's total
Medicare payments, Rice said.
However, hospital systems are increasingly moving more of
their services to outpatient from inpatient care.
CMS said it will accept comments on the proposed rule until
Sept. 6 and will respond with a final rule by Nov. 1.