Medicare Offers Tips for Hospitals on Reducing Readmissions

Two-thirds of hospitals will soon suffer penalties for above-average readmissions, according to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC).

Beginning Oct. 1, a penalty of up to 1 percent for readmissions related to acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, and pneumonia will be set to impact hospitals in 2013, with the percentage increasing to up to 3 percent into 2015.

MedPAC has released extensive information to help hospitals reduce readmissions, including these tips:

• Identify at-risk populations.

• Improve communication with providers outside of the hospital.

• Educate the patient on taking charge of his or her care.

• Schedule follow-up appointments and decide on medication before the patient is discharged.

Posted in Government/Law, Hospitals.