- A federal judge has given CMS until April 27 to issue a final notice on the two-midnight rule 0.2% inpatient payment cut, Becker’s Hospital CFO reported.
- The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted the delay so CMS can gather additional justification for the rate reduction.
- The agency was to have issued the final notice by April 18.
Under the two-midnight rule, hospital stays spanning less than two evenings are considered outpatient visits and paid accordingly. Those lasting two nights or longer are compensated as inpatient care.
CMS implemented the 0.2% inpatient payment cut in 2014, and has maintained it since, arguing it’s necessary to offset an expected increase in inpatient cases related to the two-midnight policy.
Last September, the court sided with the American Hospital Association in a lawsuit challenging the rate reduction and ordered CMS to justify its actions. The agency published its rationale in December 2015, providing two months for public feedback.