Senate Finance Committee Scrutinizes Medicare Appeals Process
The panel is calling for more attention to the increasing backlog of Medicare appeals claims and seeking out ideas that might help address the logjam.
Senators Warn Medicare Appeals System 'Buckling Under Its Own Weight'
The Senate Finance Committee is demanding more attention on the growing backlog of Medicare appeals claims, which federal officials are continuing to blame on a lack of funding. The Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals is receiving a record number of appeals, with the processing time for each claim more than quadrupling over the last five years to an average of 550 days. (Ferris, 4/28)
Huge Medicare Appeals Backlog Draws Senate Scrutiny
The Senate Finance Committee is scouting for ideas that might break a massive logjam of denied Medicare claims appealed by providers and suppliers. The backlog now exceeds 500,000 cases across the first three of five levels of appeal for denied claims, Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said during a hearing Tuesday that included testimony from claims administrators and the CMS' Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals. (Dickson, 4/28)
Panel Debates Filing Fee For Contesting Medicare Decisions
Creating a filing fee for contesting Medicare payment decisions would have benefits beyond driving new revenue to a backlogged government appeals office, said the official who leads the division. “The filing fee would encourage appellants to take a closer look at what they are appealing and to be a little more discriminating with what they bring before us,” Nancy J. Griswold, chief administrative law judge at the Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals, said at a Tuesday Senate Finance Committee hearing. (Young, 4/28)