At the request of the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce, DHPA submitted comments in support of the “site-of-service” provision in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015. This provision changed the ways in which hospitals are paid when acquiring a physician practice or ambulatory surgery center. Before this legislation, this payment disparity acted as an incentive for hospitals to acquire independent practices and ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs), enabling them to charge more at those locations.
Thanks to the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, beginning in 2017, when a hospital’s campus is more than 250 yards from an acquired practice or ASC location, the hospital will continue to be paid under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) or ASC fee schedule, respectively.
The provision does not change the current payment disparity that exists between the fee schedules or the fact that care delivered in hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs) is typically much more expensive than care delivered in physician offices and independent ASCs. However, this act represented the first time Congress recognized that this disparity should not be the basis for more hospital acquisition of competing physician practices and ASCs.
Click here to read the full comment letter.