If a medicare patient needs to be readmitted to a hosipital within 30 days after being discharged the hospital will now be fined at a rate that increases each year. Hospitals will now refer patients to end of life couseling instead of readmitting them to avoid being fined.
If you or an elderly relative have been hospitalized recently and noticed extra attention when the time came to be discharged, there's more to it than good customer service.
As of Monday, Medicare will start fining hospitals that have too many patients readmitted within 30 days of discharge due to complications. The penalties are part of President Barack Obama's health care law.
About two-thirds of the hospitals serving Medicare patients, or some 2,200 facilities, will be hit with penalties averaging around $125,000 per facility this coming year, according to government estimates.
Industry officials say they have misgivings about being held liable for circumstances beyond their control. They also complain that facilities serving low-income people, including many major teaching hopitals, are much more likely to be fined, raising questions of fairness. Under the health care law, the penalties gradually will rise.
No, it does not. Since when did Republicans think throwing more money at a government program makes it better? The ACA makes common sense changes to Medicare that save money without lowering benefits to seniors. It cuts fraud, and reimburses doctors for keeping you healthy instead of ordering more tests. And it closes the prescription drug donut hole, without adding to the deficit.
What will lower benefits to seniors in the voucher system, and the drastic cuts that Ryan/Romney have proposed to go along with it. If you're under age 60, look out. Like Romney said, he's going to make sure he keeps current seniors happy (they're his base). But he knows his plan for people under 60 is so bad he made it a point to remind seniors several times that his plan won't affect them.
The question here is whether you support common sense spending cuts, or don't you? If you don't, vote for Romney. If you do, vote fro Obama. Because this is one of those common sense spending cuts, and Romney is against it.
This is a win-win-win. A win for taxpayers. A win for hospitals. And most importantly, a win for patients. Seniors spending less time in the hospital and more time at home is a good thing for everyone.