Waiving Hospital Admission Requirement for Postacute Care Could Increase Savings

August 14, 2015 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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‚ÄčEliminating Medicare's three-day hospital admission requirement to qualify for coverage of subsequent postacute care in a skilled nursing facility could confer savings on traditional Medicare plans without increasing utilization, concludes a study published in the August 2015 issue of Health Affairs. The study, which compared hospital and postacute skilled nursing facility utilization among Medicare Advantage enrollees in matched plans that either kept or eliminated the requirement from 2006 to 2010, found that among hospitalized enrollees with a skilled nursing facility admission, the mean hospital length of stay declined 0.2 days for those who were no longer subject to the qualifying stay but increased 0.5 days for those who were.

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