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January 12, 2004Published Article

Specialty Hospital Ban was Premature

Modern Healthcare

When President Bush signed into law the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003 last month, he also was enacting changes to the federal Stark II law, most notably a "temporary" 18-month ban on physician investments in new specialty hospitals if the investing physicians make referrals to those facilities. Though the law grandfathers in specialty hospitals already in operation or under development as of Nov. 18, 2003, the imposition of this moratorium has left many in the healthcare industry puzzled over why Congress has such a focus on specialty hospitals and wondering whether the moratorium will really benefit Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries.
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