CMS offers guidance for EFT/ERA HIPAA operating rules; OIG: Beef up terminated provider data;

News From Around the Web

> The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently added guidance to operating rules for guidance on Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) and HIPAA operating rules to its website. "If a provider requests that a health plan conduct the electronic funds transfer (EFT) and remittance advice transaction in standard format (by using the ACH network), then the health plan must comply with the HIPAA standard for this transaction. And if a provider requests that a health plan transmit payments consistent with the HIPAA standard, the health plan is not permitted to delay or reject a transaction because the transaction is a standard transaction," the guidance states. Notice

Health Finance News

> Hospitals erroneously bill Medicare millions of dollars a year because they incorrectly classify the patients they treat, according to a report issued late last week by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of the Inspector General. Article

> The CEO of Madison Parish Hospital in Tallulah, La., is in prison for healthcare fraud, but the facility he ran may have to foot the bill for his misdeeds. Article

Provider News

> Heavier hospitalist workloads may lead to longer lengths of stay (LOS) and higher costs, according to a new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Researchers, led by Daniel J. Elliott, M.D., of Wilmington, Del.-based Christiana Care Health System, analyzed inpatient admissions to a private hospitalist service at Christiana from February 2008 to January 2011, adjusting for visit-, hospital- and patient-related variables. The analysis comprised 20,241 admissions for 13,916 patients, with an average of 15.5 daily patient encounters per hospitalist. Article

And Finally... April Fools' Day in the Internet meme age. Much wow. Article

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