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Washington, DC Battle over Physician Employment and Medicare Site Neutral Policy Continues; Lengthy American Hospital Association Response

March 3, 2016

One of the top health care issues in Congress remains the new new site neutral Medicare payment policy for new off-campus, hospital outpatient department (HOPD) deals that were signed on and after November 2, 2015.

As a reminder, the November 2015 budget ceiling deal included site neutral payments as a payment offset.  Under this scenario, if a certain Medicare service could be provided in different levels of care (for example, a hospital, surgery center, or a physician’s office), then the service would be paid at a lower setting level, no matter the setting.  Beginning in 2017, some new off-campus HOPD services acquired by hospitals on or after the date of enactment (November 2, 2015) would no longer be paid at the higher hospital rate.

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