Medicare sets 65% ambulatory surgery rate

Medicare has set a final rule updating the hospital outpatient PPS scale, which specifies that in most cases, it will pay ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) at 65 percent of hospital outpatient department rates.  The rule should increase payments to some ASCs, but in other cases things look bleak. For example, single-specialty centeres specializing in gastroenterology should see big cuts.

The new rules aren't all bad, however. For example, though it will pay less for 365 procedures that are usually performed in doctors' offices, Medicare will pay more than 65 percent for a list of 45 device-intensive procedures. What's more, Medicare has agreed to reimburse for 819 more procedures than in the past in 2008, bringing the total to 3,390 procedures which are eligible.

To learn more about ASC reimbursement under Medicare:
- read this Modern Healthcare piece

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