Senate Hearing Examines Impact of Observation Status on Older Adults

August 6, 2014 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​A July 30, 2014, hearing held by the U.S. Senate's Special Committee on Aging discussed the impact of observation status under Medicare, in which patients receive care in the hospital but are not admitted. Senator Bill Nelson (D-Florida), who called the hearing, emphasized that Medicare does not cover short-stay care in a skilled nursing facility unless it is preceded by a hospital stay of at least three days and does not count days spent under observation. Beneficiaries are also responsible for outpatient copayments.

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