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News from Page, Wolfberg & Wirth

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) just announced in MLN Matters® Number: MM9412 that the Ambulance Inflation Factor (AIF) for calendar year 2016 is negative 0.4%.  This means that ambulance services will see a slight reduction in Medicare reimbursement rates next year.  CMS also published a Final Rule containing three important items for the ambulance industry.  Those items are:
  1. Ambulance Bonuses.  CMS is updating the Medicare regulations to reflect that ambulance bonus payments have been extended through December 31, 2017.
  2. Geographic Designations The changes that CMS made last year to geographic designations – when some ZIP codes changed from urban to rural, and a lot more ZIP codes changed from rural to urban – are sticking around in 2016 and thereafter under this Rule.
  3. Ambulance Staffing Regulations.  Finally, CMS is updating the Medicare regulations related to ambulance staffing requirements.  The regulations will now provide that all vehicles must meet and be staffed in accordance with all state and local rules.
Click HERE to read PWW’s detailed summary of the regulatory changes and to link to the ambulance-specific provisions of the Final Rule. If you have any questions about the Final Rule or the 2016 AIF, please contact any PWW attorney or consultant.
Learn about a host of new Medicare initiatives coming in 2016 and beyond at the ALL NEW abc360 Conferences this spring.