Willis Eye, CMS tangle over hospital classification: 5 things to know

In 2013, Willis Eye re-established inpatient care services at its main building and applied for Medicare enrollment as a hospital after years of being classified as an ASC; now, Willis Eye is at odds with CMS over the classification, according to a Philadelphia Business Journal report.

Here are five things to know:

1. Willis Eye relinquished its state ASC license after applying to enroll in Medicare as a hospital. CMS pays higher rates to inpatient hospital services than outpatient ASC services. However, the application was denied because Willis Eye’s primary services were outpatient.

2. Willis Eye maintains it is a hospital because it does have inpatient procedures. U.S. Senator Robert P. Casey penned a letter to Medicare in support of Willis Eye’s status as a hospital

3. Pennsylvania regulators concluded Willis Eye met the Medicare conditions of being a hospital and recommended certification as a hospital.

4. When Willis Eye operated as an ASC, the facility attempted to partner with Thomas Jefferson University Hospital for inpatient cases at the neighboring neurosciences hospital; the two already partnered with Willis Eye serving as a training site for Thomas Jefferson University medical students. However, the inpatient neuro patient demand at the hospital was too great to accommodate the eye cases.

5. Sen. Casey’s letter outlines the unique services Willis Eye provides.

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