January 11, 2021 - 10:30am

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Hearing. The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) will conduct a public hearing on January 11, 2021, at 10:30 a.m. CST, to receive public comments on proposed rules for the Comprehensive Hospital Increase Reimbursement Program.

Due to the declared state of disaster stemming from COVID-19, this hearing will be conducted online only. No physical entry to the hearing will be permitted.

Persons interested in attending may register for the public hearing online.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

HHSC will broadcast the public hearing. The broadcast will be archived for access on demand and can be accessed at https://hhs.texas.gov/about-hhs/communications-events/live-archived-meetings.

Proposal. HHSC proposes an amendment to §353.1305, concerning Uniform Hospital Rate Increase Program; new §353.1306, concerning Comprehensive Hospital Increase Reimbursement Program for program periods on or after September 1, 2021; and new §353.1307, concerning Quality Metrics and Required Reporting Used to Evaluate the Success of the Comprehensive Hospital Increase Reimbursement Program. The proposed rules were published in the January 1, 2021 issue of the Texas Register.

Background and Purpose. Currently in the Uniform Hospital Rate Increase Program, HHSC directs a Medicaid managed care organization (MCO) to provide a uniform rate increase for inpatient and outpatient services for hospitals participating in the MCO’s network in a designated service delivery area. To continue incentivizing hospitals to improve access, quality, and innovation in the provision of hospital services in Year 5 of the program (i.e., September 1, 2021, through August 31, 2022) and beyond, HHSC is proposing new quality metrics, eligibility requirements and financing components for the program. HHSC is also proposing the amendments to comply with federal regulations that require directed-payment programs to advance goals included in the state’s managed care quality strategy and to align with the ongoing efforts to transition from the Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment program.

Written Comments. Written comments regarding the proposal may be sent by U.S. mail to HHSC, Mail Code H400, P.O. Box 13247, Austin, Texas 78711-3247, or by e-mail to RAD_1115_Waiver_Finance@hhsc.state.tx.us.

To be considered, comments must be (1) postmarked or shipped before February 1, 2021; (2) hand-delivered before 5:00 p.m. on February 1, 2021; or (3) e-mailed before midnight on February 1, 2021. When e-mailing comments, please indicate "Comments on Proposed Rule 21R027" in the subject line.

Preferred Communication. During the current state of disaster due to COVID-19, physical forms of communication are checked with less frequency than during normal business operations. Therefore, please submit comments by email if possible.

Persons with disabilities who wish to attend the hearing and require auxiliary aids or services should contact Fiscal Program Coordination at (512) 695-4122 at least 72 hours prior to the hearing so appropriate arrangements can be made.