December 20, 2011

Nearly one-third of dialysis centers face penalties under VBP

Daily Briefing

More than 30% of dialysis facilities will receive a reduction in Medicare payments in 2012 under a value-based purchasing (VBP) program for end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients, Modern Healthcare reports.

Last week, CMS released the first results for the ESRD Quality Incentive Program (QIP), which evaluates dialysis facilities based on a set of quality measures for key areas of dialysis care, such as anemia management and dialysis adequacy. The facilities that do not meet performance standards receive reduced Medicare payments for dialysis services the following year under the ESRD Prospective Payment System.

According to the results, 69.1% of facilities will receive no reduction under the QIP. Among those receiving cuts, 16.6% of 4,939 facilities will receive a 0.5% reduction, 6% will receive a 1% cut, 7.7% will receive a 1.5% cut, and 0.6% will receive a 2% reduction.

Overall, dialysis facilities paid under the program are expected to have a 2.1% increase in Medicare payment rates in 2012, which CMS said totals about $8.3 billion (Barr, Modern Healthcare, 12/15 [subscription required]; CMS results release, 12/15).

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