Hospitals fight two-midnight rule

The American Hospital Association is taking steps toward legal action against the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' two-midnight rule regarding patient admissions, as well as cuts to the Inpatient Prospective Payment System, AHA News Now reported. The hospitals allege that the federal agency hasn't provided a reasonable explanation for the action and failed to follow regulations regarding proper notice and comment. Under the new rule, hospitals must admit patients as inpatients for at least two consecutive midnights in order to get beyond the short-stay threshold, a red flag for auditors. As part of the two-midnight rule, CMS has ordered Recovery Audit Contractors not to review any short-stay claims that span beyond two midnights for both acute care and critical access hospitals. Article