Nearly half of U.S. hospitals eligible for an incentive payment through the Medicare electronic health record program received one in fiscal 2012. The 2,291 hospitals that received a total of $3.5 billion in Medicare EHR incentive payments was up from 777 hospitals and $1.3 billion in fiscal 2011.
The Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act would help balance out the retirement of the Baby Boomer generation with an infusion of immigrants, who tend to be young, the White House says in a report (.pdf), released July 10.
Medicare hasn't recovered $543 million in overpayments to providers in 2010 because the new accounting system for the Center for Medicare Services did not automatically extract data and provider information was lost, says a June Health and Human Service inspector general report (.pdf) that was released July 2.
"The greatest nation on Earth cannot keep conducting its business by drifting from one manufactured crisis to the next," he said. The federal government has faced the prospect of shutdown due to lack of appropriations or the possibility of not paying its bills due to hitting the debt ceiling in periodic crises over the past 2 years.
President Obama used his second inaugural address to call for a national adoption of technology and innovation backed by the federal government, and set an agenda focused on legislation of long-term problems like climate change and immigration reform. In his Jan. 21 inaugural address, Obama called for work to repair and revamp worn out federal programs that "are inadequate to the needs of our time."
The Health and Human Services Department has implemented predictive analytics technologies, but it hasn't fully complied with the requirements for reporting actual and projected improper payments recovered and avoided in the Medicare fee-for-service program and its return on investment, saysto an HHS inspector general audit report (.pdf).
Current congressional plans to reduce federal healthcare spending only shifts costs to millions of citizens, but there exist options to save more than $385 billion, says the Center for American Progress.The report puts forth an alternative approach it calls the Senior Protection Plan, which it claims will save the federal government $385 billion over 10 years, while generating up to $100 billion over 10 years through health care-related tax policy changes.
The federal office that combats fraud in Medicare and Medicaid has begun to integrate its two predictive data models, said David Nelson of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. One automated system flags those healthcare providers most likely to commit fraud because of past criminal and financial issues, among other factors. Another system rates fee-for-service claims for their risk of fraud.
If sequestration happens as currently called for by the Budget Control Act, it will result in a real drop of 12.1 percent in discretionary spending compared to the current fiscal year, says the Congressional Research Service in a new report.
Two federal incentive programs met through a combination of Medicare payment incentives and penalties to encourage caregivers to go digital with some aspect of their practice will overlap for three