Week in Washington is brought to you by Michael Cohen, PhD. Tune in each week to read the latest on healthcare policy and get a glimpse of what’s on the horizon.
Week in Washington
CMS released a slew of rules that include:
- A behavioral health rule (CMS loosened requirements on Medicare patients seeing a therapist).
- Physician fee schedule rule – CMS finalized Medicare cuts to providers.
- Changes to the Medicare Shared Saving Program- CMS finalized changes to benchmarks to encourage more participation. You can read Wakely’s analysis of the proposed rule here (the final rule generally aligned with the proposed rule).
Two trends are emerging to keep with Medicare and Congress. The first is, according to Politico, a group of 46 bipartisan Senators wrote to Senate leadership that Congress should alleviate the looming cuts to providers during the lame duck session (i.e., in December). The second is continuing chatter that if Republicans take control of the House, there is interest in overhauling Medicare.
Flu season is off to its worst start in 13 years. Cases and hospitalizations are far outpacing the normal season with 2022 shaping up to be the most severe year since the 2009 H1N1 swine flu pandemic. Combined with a high number of RSV cases and Covid, many hospitals are again over-burdened.
- URRT – ACA Rate Review data (i.e., URRT data) was officially released by CMS this week.
- HIXCompare – The RWJF sponsored plan data was updated to include Medicaid MCO and Medicare Advantage data. Worth checking out!
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