Freestanding emergency rooms now able to serve Medicare, Medicai - FOX34 Lubbock

Freestanding emergency rooms now able to serve Medicare, Medicaid-Insured

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

From the National Association of Freestanding Emergency Centers:

Austin, TX – In response to notification by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) that freestanding ERs are now officially recognized healthcare providers eligible for reimbursement for treating Medicare and Medicaid patients, the National Association of Freestanding Emergency Centers (NAFEC) issued the following statement:

“Today’s announcement by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid means the elderly, vulnerable and underserved in our nation will now have a host of high-quality options when it comes to emergency medical care, an improvement that is especially critical during our current healthcare crisis,” said Brad Shields, Executive Director of NAFEC.  “The freestanding ER community has advocated to be able to serve Medicare and Medicaid patients for more than a decade and we’re thrilled to finally be able to provide them with timely access to emergency medicine. We are grateful to Rep. Jodey Arrington, Sen. Ted Cruz and the many members of the Texas delegation who support freestanding ER's efforts to obtain CMS recognition and serve the communities we call home.” 

Obtaining recognition by CMS means that freestanding emergency centers (FECs) will be able to increase capacity into the overall healthcare system and treat elderly Medicare-insured patients. FECs have shorter wait times and smaller facilities than traditional hospital ERs, are fully licensed, staffed with emergency medical personnel 24/7, and are fully equipped with ventilators and other critical equipment. While this recent action by CMS is limited to the public health emergency, NAFEC will continue to advocate for a long term solution. Permanent CMS recognition equips FECs with a greater ability to expand into rural and underserved communities where healthcare infrastructure can be scarce and patients may have few options. 

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