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  • Washington Highlights

    CMS Announces Awardees for Closed Hospital Slot Redistribution Program

    Len Marquez, Senior Director, Government Relations

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Dec. 31 released a new round of awardees of resident cap increases under the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA, P.L. 111-148 and P.L. 111-152) closed hospital residency slot redistribution program. CMS redistributed 28.89 Direct Graduate Medical Education (DGME) slots and 26.79 Indirect Medical Education (IME) slots from closed hospital Long Beach Medical Center in Long Beach, N.Y.

    Applications for the round seven slots were due on September 4, 2014. A total of two hospitals, both located in New York, received slots through the program.

    The closed hospital residency slot redistribution program is required by Sec. 5506 of the ACA, and CMS issued implementing regulations in the Calendar Year (CY) 2011 Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) Final Rule and in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 Inpatient Prospective Payment Systems (IPPS) Final Rule.

    Under the program, CMS is required to take all of the DGME and IME residency slots from hospitals that closed on or after March 23, 2008, and permanently redistribute them according to certain criteria. Prior to the ACA, hospitals that took on displaced residents from closed hospitals could only receive cap slots temporarily until the displaced residents completed their training, but there was no provision for the permanent redistribution of these slots.

    The ACA specified that hospitals in the same geographic region as the closed hospital would receive priority for that closed hospital’s slots. Among other criteria, CMS also gave preference in distributing these permanent slots to hospitals that:

    • Assumed an entire program from the closed hospital;
    • Received slots from the closed hospital under a GME affiliation agreement and would use the slots to continue to train at least the number of residents they had trained under the affiliation agreement; and
    • Took in residents displaced by the hospital closure and would continue to train residents in the same programs as the displaced residents, even after the displaced residents completed their training.

    Through seven rounds of awards, 1318.79 DGME slots and 1258.06 IME slots have been awarded through this AAMC-supported program.