AACU: Laws unfairly protect big players, threaten to 'dissolve' low-cost care — 5 takeaways

The American Association of Clinical Urologists lauded the proposed 2019 Medicare Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System and ASC Payment System, Urology Times reports.

Here are five takeaways:

1. AACU said the proposal tackles the "inequitable" reimbursement differential between office settings, hospital outpatient departments and ASCs, although it doesn't directly address the structural difference between ASC and HOPD payments.

2. However, the proposal was met with backlash from hospitals. The American Hospital Association said CMS was inappropriately characterizing clinic visits in hospital outpatient settings as "check-ups" by setting their reimbursement at the same rate as clinic visits in physician offices.

3. Hospital stakeholders persuaded 184 members of the U.S. House of Representatives to argue against the site-neutrality proposal on the grounds it may violate the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015.

4. AACU contends the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 and the ACA unfairly "protect outpatient facilities tied to hospitals and enhance large players' bottom lines to such a degree that cost-effective, efficient and patient-centered sites of care may soon dissolve."

5. AACU said it's committed to representing practicing urologists' interests on Capitol Hill and in legislative changes.

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