New violations put health system's federal funds back at risk

Cape Fear Valley Health System is experiencing déjà vu, as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) again told the North Carolina health system to fix deficiencies or lose Medicare funding, reports the Fayetteville Observer. CMS has threatened to end federal reimbursements five times since March 2011.

After state inspectors found additional violations on Dec. 22, CMS gave Cape Fear Valley until Jan. 19 to reach compliance or it will terminate its Medicare and Medicaid payments, according to a Jan. 3 letter to the health system.

The federal programs account for more than half of the health system's insurance payments.

Neither CMS nor Cape Fear Valley has revealed the Dec. 22 complaint, although health system spokesman Vince Benbenek said the most recent deficiencies involved telemetry policies, the Observer notes. Health system officials already have submitted a corrective plan to CMS and expect the agency to approve it, Benbenek said.

CMS will make a final determination after North Carolina officials inspect the health system in the next two weeks.

Previously, the government gave the Cape Fear Valley until Nov. 13 to resolve overaggressive hospital security tactics, FierceHealthcare previously reported. The state found the health system compliant, allowing Cape Fear Valley to keep its Medicare reimbursements, according to the Observer.

To learn more:
- read the Observer article
- here's the FierceHealthcare article on the original violations