Payment for Physician and Other Health Care Professional Services Purchased by Indian Health Programs and Medical Charges Associated With Non-Hospital-Based Care
This proposed rule would amend Indian Health Service (IHS) Purchased and Referred Care (PRC), formally known as the Contract Health Services (CHS), regulations to apply Medicare payment methodologies to all physician and other health care professional services and non-hospital-based services that are either authorized under such regulations or purchased by urban Indian organizations. Specifically, it proposes that the health programs operated by IHS, Tribe, Tribal organization, or urban Indian organization (collectively, I/T/U programs) will pay the lowest of the amount provided for under the applicable Medicare fee schedule, prospective payment system, or Medicare waiver; the amount negotiated by a repricing agent, if available; or the usual and customary billing rate. Repricing agents may be used to determine whether IHS may benefit from savings by utilizing negotiated rates offered through commercial health care networks. This proposed rule seeks comment on how to establish reimbursement that is consistent across Federal health care programs, aligns payment with inpatient services, and enables the IHS to expand beneficiary access to medical care.