We are emailing today because your input is needed in response to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed ASC reimbursement rates for 2015. ASCA will once again submit comments raising industry-wide concerns, but it is important that CMS hear from individual centers and state associations as well.
According to the proposed rule, ASCs would receive an effective average update of 1.2 percent based on the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), while hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs) would receive an effective increase of 2.1 percent based on the hospital market basket. This would continue the troubling trend of diverging payments, and result in HOPDs receiving 81 percent more next year to perform the same procedures that are performed at ASCs. The first document attached is a sample comment letter advocating for ASC payments to be updated based on the hospital market basket to stop this growing disparity in payments.
With respect to the quality reporting program, CMS is proposing to make ASC-11, Cataracts — Improvement in Patients Visual Function within 90 Days Following Cataract Surgery, a voluntary measure. ASCA has worked hard to remove this as a mandatory measure, as it is inappropriate as a facility measure. The second letter attached is a sample comment letter thanking CMS for proposing to no longer require the reporting of this measures for the ASC quality reporting program. The more support CMS receives for this proposal, the more likely it will be finalized, so please take a few minutes and send your letter today.
Also, as a reminder, the agency proposed to add 10 new spine procedures to the ASC list of payable procedures for 2015. The third letter attached is a sample comment letter requesting the addition of these procedures to the ASC payable list.
The final attachment includes other basic sample language that could be incorporated into any comment letter. While we provide you with draft language because we know how busy you are, the most persuasive letters will also include your individual details regarding how the proposed changes will impact your center.
Click here to submit your comment on the proposed changes. Comments are due Tuesday, September 2 at 5 pm ET.
For more information, contact Kara Newbury at firstname.lastname@example.org.