Medicare penalizes Tennova facility

By BRIAN GRAVES

Posted 12/29/17

Tennova Healthcare-Cleveland is one of more than 700 hospitals which are being penalized by Medicare over patient safety issues.The news came as the hospital is celebrating the 65th anniversary of …

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Medicare penalizes Tennova facility

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Tennova Healthcare-Cleveland is one of more than 700 hospitals which are being penalized by Medicare over patient safety issues.

The news came as the hospital is celebrating the 65th anniversary of its predecessor, Bradley Memorial Hospital.

In an analysis by Kaiser Health News, it found more than half of those hospitals being penalized were punished last year through the penalty, which was created by the Affordable Care Act and began four years ago.

This is the first such penalty for Tennova of Cleveland.

The program is designed as a financial incentive for hospitals to avoid infections and other mishaps, such as blood clots and bedsores.

Because of the penalty, the hospital will lose 1 percent of its Medicare payments.

For all the penalized hospitals, the reductions will retroactively apply to Medicare payments from the beginning of the federal fiscal year in October and through the end of September 2018. Medicare will cut by 1 percent its payments for each patient’s stay, as well as the amount of money hospitals recieve to teach medical residents and to care for low-income people. The total amount for each hospital depends on how much they end up billing Medicare.

The Cleveland hospital is not alone in the area receiving the penalties. Parkridge Medical Center and Erlanger Hospital were also cited in the report.

Also included in the list were the Roane Medical Center in Harriman, Fort Loudoun Medical Center in Lenoir City and Le Conte Medical Center in Sevierville, which are all three relatively new facilities. The University of Tennessee Medical Center has also been hit with the penalties.

According to the Kaiser Health News report, several types of hospitals are excluded from being considered for penalties.

They include hospitals that treat psychiatric patients, veterans or children.

Also exempted are hospitals with the “critical access” designation for being the only provider in an area. Maryland hospitals are excluded from the program because Medicare has a separate method of paying them.

“Tennova Healthcare–Cleveland is committed to providing safe, quality care for every patient,” said Stephanie Austin, Tennova spokesperson. “Our physicians, nurses and other clinicians actively work to continually improve care, and measurement helps identify progress and opportunities to further development.”

“Our Quality and Safety Committee, as well as our Leadership and Medical Staff committees, review results and, where necessary, enhance our clinical procedures based on scientific evidence and best practices,” she continued. “We have adopted measures to make certain the  best possible outcomes are achieved at all times.”

To view the full list of hospitals penalized and to learn more about the scoring system, visit https://www.medicare.gov/hospitalcompare/HAC-reduction-program.html.


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