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Charlotte Amalie
Saturday, February 4, 2023
HomeNewsArchivesV.I. Hospitals Hoping for Increased Medicare Reimbursements

V.I. Hospitals Hoping for Increased Medicare Reimbursements

In a short meeting Monday, the Territorial Governing Board of the V.I. Government Hospital and Health Facilities voted Monday to get V.I. hospital data to Gov. John deJongh Jr. right away, to help him negotiate lifting the ceiling on Medicare reimbursements in the territory.
The territorial board is a joint body overseeing both hospitals and other health facilities, composed of members of both the Juan F. Luis Hospital and the Roy L. Schneider Regional Medical Center governing boards.
"We want the governor to be successful when he meets with federal officials tomorrow morning," said Lynn Millin-Maduro, the board’s chairwoman. "Hopefully we are going to see some relief on that ceiling on Medicare reimbursements."
Medicare sets reimbursement rates for various medical procedures, and those rates are capped under the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act. Reimbursement rates are lower in the territory than they would be in a similarly situated state. Having accurate, recent figures will help the territory make its case as it works on the issue over the next several months, said Millin-Maduro.
The board also voted to authorize Millin-Maduro to select a committee among its members, which will seek out a territorial board coordinator or administrator. Once the committee completes a search process, the board will vote on a final candidate.
The idea is to have a permanent liaison between the two boards, "so they can report back to each board what occurred, so meetings can be used for moving forward agendas instead of catching up," she said, adding, "And to ensure the two district boards are not competing against one another."
For instance, as both hospital boards move forward with new computer and information systems, it may be more cost effective to contract for hardware, software and support for the entire territory at once, rather than having each hospital negotiate separate agreements, she said.
This liaison would also be responsible for issuing press releases, announcing public meetings and general public relations duties, she said.

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