COVID-19 Data Reporting Threatens Medicare Funding

On August 25th, the Center for Medicare & Medicare Services (CMS) released requirements for additional COVID-19 data reporting for hospitals and labs. The requirements and penalties are listed below.

Hospitals daily reports:
  • Number of confirmed and suspected COVID-19 cases
  • Intensive care unit bed occupied
  • Availability of supplies, including ventilators and personal protective equipment.

Penalty: For not reporting the correct data or correcting deficiencies, hospitals will be withdrawn from Medicare and Medicaid programs.

The new reporting requirements are estimated to allocate an additional 3 million hours across all hospitals and cost $212.2 million annually. ($38,488 per hospital)

Labs daily reports:
  • All laboratories conducting COVID-19 testing must report results to HHS daily. HHS is providing a one-time three week grace period.

Penalty: Labs that don’t comply can expect a $1,000 fine for the first day and $500 for each day after

The new reporting requirements are estimated to cost labs as much as $4.2 billion annually and between $145 million and $176 million in one-time costs.