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Guam hospital receives additional $2.4M in Medicare funds

A Guam hospital has received a $2.4 million boost in Medicare funds following changes to the amount provided by the federal government for each eligible patient.

The Guam Memorial Hospital Authority received the extra funds after the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services agreed to "rebase" patient rates, Pacific Daily News reported Sunday.

There will be a 26% increase in the rate for nightly hospital stays, up to $1,646, effective April 17, according to Lillian Perez-Posadas, the hospital's administrator.

The hospital expects the new rate will equal about $6 million each year for payments on Medicare, Medicaid and Medically Indigent Program accounts, officials said.

"These additional funds will definitely go a long way" toward helping the hospital fulfill its mission, Perez-Posadas said in a statement.

The hospital received $6.3 million in January for adjustments to fiscal 2014 to 2016 Medicare cost reports due to the financial restructuring, officials said.

The hospital anticipates another adjustment payment for its fiscal 2017 Medicare cost report, officials said.

The hospital each year bills about $43.9 million for services to Medicare patients, but is paid only about half of that amount, officials said.

The decision to rebase the hospital's patient rates is a significant victory in its decades-long effort to update Medicare reimbursement levels that have remained unchanged since the 1990s, the newspaper reported.

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