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Committee on Energy and CommerceCommittee on Ways and MeansIntroducedJuly 30th, 2009
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Medicare Support for Rural Hospitals Act
To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to make temporary improvements to the Medicare inpatient payment adjustment for low-volume hospitals, and for other purposes.
Medicare Support for Rural Hospitals Act - Amends title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act (SSA) with respect to the additional inpatient hospital service payment (payment adjustment) for low-volume hospitals (usually meaning a "subsection (d) hospital" located more than 25 road miles from another subsection (d) hospital and having less than 800 discharges during the fiscal year.) (Generally, a subsection (d) hospital is an acute care hospital, particularly one that receives payments under Medicare's inpatient prospective payment system (IPPS) when providing covered inpatient services to eligible beneficiaries.) Redefines low-volume hospital, for discharges occurring during FY2010 only, as a subsection (d) hospital located more than 15 (instead of 25) road miles from another subsection (d) hospital and having less than 1,500 (instead of 800) discharges of individuals entitled to, or enrolled for, Medicare part A (Hospital Insurance) benefits ("tweeners,'' or hospitals too large to be critical access hospitals, but too small to be financially viable under the Medicare hospital prospective payment system [PPS]). Revises, for FY2010 only, the temporary applicable percentage in the formula for determining the payment adjustment for such hospitals. Requires the use of the non-wage adjusted PPS rate during FY2010 under the Medicare-dependent hospital (MDH) program. Amends the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 to repeal the state option to verify a declaration of U.S. citizenship or nationality for purposes of Medicaid (SSA title XIX) or CHIP (Children's Health Insurance) (SSA title XXI) eligibility through verification of a name and Social Security number with the Commissioner of Social Security, as an alternative to the current documentation requirement.