HHS Launches Probe Into Unusual Billing Patterns For Inpatient Hospice Care

Modern Healthcare: Unusual Billing Patterns Spur Probe Of Inpatient Hospice Care
HHS' inspector general's office is launching an in-depth investigation into cases where Medicare hospice beneficiaries get inpatient care, following unusual billing patterns that surfaced during recent research on the $1.1 billion industry. Medicare hospice is designed to provide comfort to patients with six months to live, not life-saving treatments. However, in some cases, Medicare hospice patients do qualify for palliative inpatient care—and a new OIG study found that a high proportion of those lucrative services go to patients who stay in a certain type of provider, raising questions about the bills in those settings (Carlson, 5/6).

This is part of Kaiser Health News' Daily Report - a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. The full summary of the day's news can be found here and you can sign up for e-mail subscriptions to the Daily Report here. In addition, our staff of reporters and correspondents file original stories each day, which you can find on our home page.