Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Medicare has stopped paying for treatment for hospital-acquired infections, taking effect today. The new policy is estimated to result in a $20 million savings for Medicare over the next year, according to Karen Folk Feinstein, CEO of the Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative. She added that Medicare spent approximately $20 billion on such avoidable infections in 2007. Feinstein says it is the beginning of a new era, with commercial insurers and Medicaid offices in some states following suit. Medicare's goal is to improve patient care because hospitals are no longer getting paid for preventable conditions such as bed sores or urinary tract infections.