Observation Stays in the National Spotlight

In a press release issued Friday, January 10th, the American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) brought light to the recent media attention garnered by the complex issue of observation stays.  The press release links to two media segments focused on the issue: a recent episode of NBC's Nightly News and an op-ed piece published in The Hill.

In its January 9 broadcast, NBC Nightly News aired a segment covering the Medicare issue. The piece, titled “The Two Words that Cost Medicare Patients Thousands,” warned of the financial implications for Medicare beneficiaries when a hospital stay is classified as “outpatient observation.”

The segment began with a cautionary statement for Medicare recipients: “[NBC Nightly News] is back with this new warning for everyone on Medicare. Specifically, it is about the words that appear on hospital forms and small differences in the fine print that could mean thousands of dollars in payments down the line.”

The news story comes on the heels of a recent opinion-editorial piece in The Hill, “Don’t Deny Seniors Nursing Care,” penned by AHCA/NCAL President and CEO Mark Parkinson on behalf of the observation stays coalition.

To read the complete press release, visit the AHCA/NCAL website.