Earlier this month in its Federal Fiscal Year 2015 Proposed Rule, CMS released the proposed FFY 2016 Wage Index Development Timetable and there are significant changes. The FFY 2016 wage index process will commence as early as late May 2014 with the publication of the preliminary FFY 2016 Wage Index Public Use File (PUF). This file was previously posted in the September/October timeframe. As a result, all subsequent dates for FFY 2016 have been drastically moved up as well.
CMS will separately release the preliminary Calendar Year (CY) 2013 Occupational Mix Survey PUF in early to mid-July as these surveys will not be submitted by providers until the July 1, 2014 deadline.
Accordingly, the deadline for hospitals to submit any revisions to its CY 2013 Occupational Mix Survey and FFY 2016 wage index (Worksheet S-3, Parts II, III & IV) data are required no later than early October 2014 (the actual date has yet to be determined by CMS). Providers wishing to make changes to the data that appears in the preliminary FFY 2016 Wage Index and Occupational Mix Survey PUFs must have all supporting documentation submitted to its Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) by this to be determined date. As a result of the earlier date of submission, MACs will be required to complete their wage index desk reviews by mid-December 2014. This date is moved up from the late January timeframe historically. All other PUF release dates coincide with previous years.
HFS can help with all your occupational mix and wage index needs. If you have any questions or would like assistance filing wage index revisions, please contact Ryan Sader at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 714-656-4485. Our secure wage index client portal provides updates on changing regulations and presents detailed instructions and tips for reporting accurate wage index information on the Medicare cost report.