AHA Sends Second ‘Wish List’ to President-Elect Trump

Association offers suggestions for cutting red tape

For the second time in three days, the American Hospital Association (AHA) has provided President-elect Donald Trump with a list of requests for regulatory reforms to reduce bureaucratic red tape.

“The balance between flexibility in patient care and regulatory burden seems to have reached a tipping point,” the letter said. “The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and other agencies of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released 43 hospital-related proposed and final rules in the first 10 months of the year alone, comprising almost 21,000 pages of text. In addition to the sheer volume, the scope of changes required by the new regulations is beginning to outstrip the field’s ability to absorb them.”

The AHA suggested the following actions to reduce the burden on hospitals and patients resulting from regulations promulgated by the CMS:

  • Suspend hospital star ratings
  • Cancel stage 3 of the “meaningful use” program
  • Suspend electronic clinical quality measure reporting requirements
  • Remove faulty hospital quality measures
  • Eliminate unfair long-term care hospital (LTCH) regulation
  • End home health agency pre-claim review
  • Restore compliant codes for inpatient rehabilitation facility (IHF) 60% rule
  • Postpone and re-evaluate post-acute care quality measure requirements
  • Withdraw proposed mandatory Part B drug demonstration
  • Protect Medicaid disproportionate share hospital (DSH) payments
  • Preserve Medicaid supplemental payments in managed care
  • Stop federal agency intrusion into private-sector accreditation standards
  • Undo agency over-reach on so-called “information blocking”
  • Hold Medicare recovery audit contractors (RACs) accountable
  • Adjust readmission measures to reflect differences in sociodemographic factors
  • Provide more regulatory flexibility in payment-reform models
  • Make future bundled-payment programs voluntary
  • Expand Medicare coverage of telehealth services
  • Prohibit enforcement of direct supervision requirements
  • Prevent enforcement of 96-hour rule
  • Allow flexibility for providers who want to share treatment space to address gaps in patients’ access to care
  • Rescind CMS guidance prohibiting the use of secure units in hospitals treating patients who are prison or jail inmates
  • Modify conditions of participation (CoPs) to allow hospitals to recommend post-acute care providers
  • Create Stark regulatory exception for clinical integration arrangements

Source: AHA; December 2, 2016.