CHA News Article

OIG Recommends Reassessing CAH Designations to Generate Medicare Savings
Most California CAHs would not be affected

Last week, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Inspector General (OIG) released a report recommending that qualifications of the nation’s critical access hospitals (CAHs) be reviewed and reassessed, with potential to generate substantial Medicare savings by removing certifications for those CAHs that no longer qualify. The OIG recommended that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) seek legislative authority from Congress specifically to revise CAH conditions of participation and remove the permanent exemption from the current distance requirement. The report, which examined CAH locations using digital maps to determine their eligibility, states that many current CAHs would no longer qualify for the program under the distance requirement. While the American Hospital Association estimates the recommendations could negatively impact as many as 75 percent of CAHs nationwide, most California CAHs would not be affected because they would continue to meet distance and location requirements.

The OIG’s report is attached. CHA will continue to update members on this issue as it develops.