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Medicare says it won't cover hospital errors.

Pear R.

This article reports on a new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rule mandating that Medicare will no longer pay for treating certain preventable errors starting in 2008, including some hospital-acquired infections, decubitus ulcers, and retained foreign bodies. The policy is generating considerable discussion in patient safety circles, with some expressing concerns regarding the economic impact on hospitals and the increased efforts it is likely to create for hospitals to document certain patient problems present at the time of admission.