340B outpatient drugs; Medicare timely filing;

> Critical-access hospitals, sole-community hospitals and other eligible organizations can apply for the 340B discount program for outpatient drugs through Sept. 30 at the Health Resources and Services Administration's website, reports AHA News Now. Article

> Effective Jan. 1, 2011, new Medicare fee-for-service timely filing requirements go into effect. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued additional instructions on how the rules work, according to MLN Matters article MM 7080. Article

> While more hospitals are joining other employers in developing staff wellness programs, such programs need to be comprehensive to offer significant employee health benefits, reports the National Institute for Health Reform. Research Brief

> CMS has issued new instructions for how inpatient rehabilitation facilities, skilled nursing facilities, and swing-bed providers paid under a prospective payment system should report assessment dates on Medicare claims, according to MLN Matters article MM 7019. Article

> The nonprofit health system Scott & White, based in Temple, Texas, plans to complete a merger with the 25-bed critical-access hospital Johns Community Hospital in Taylor, Texas, by Sept. 1, reports The Statesman. Article

> RehabCare Group isn't happy about the potential impact of proposed Part Medicare B payment changes for rehabilitation therapy services, issuing a position paper challenging a 50 percent multiple-procedure payment reduction beginning in January 2011. But the news isn't all bad: The St. Louis-based hospital chain posted $14.7 million net earnings for 2Q10 compared to $6.88 million in 2Q09, reports the St. Louis Business Journal. Article

> Do your staff members make coding and billing errors because they don't understand Medicare coding edits? The Medicare Learning Network has issued the new booklet, How to Use the National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI) Tools, to help solve the puzzle. Booklet

And Finally ... I could use a new car, but this might be a hard choice. Article