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Medicare Proposes Alcohol, Depression Screening Rules

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, August 16, 2011

The American Hospital Association supports both rules as well:

"Prevention of illness or disability only occurs when beneficiaries receive an accurate diagnosis, effective treatment and appropriate follow-up," the AHA wrote in a daily news brief last week.

"Evidence supports improved health outcomes for beneficiaries when they receive screening and behavioral counseling to reduce alcohol misuse. We also agree that screening for depression in adults is reasonable and necessary for the prevention or early detection of illness or disability, and is appropriate for individuals entitled to benefits under Part A or enrolled under Part B," the AHA wrote.

Both rules are currently in a comment period, which expires Aug. 18.



Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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