In recent years, many older persons who have been hospitalized are stunned to learn that their hospital bills will  not be covered by Medicare because their stay in the hospital has been characterized as “for observation.”  Observation status is a billing code that automatically means Medicare will not pay the costs of the patient’s stay.  The overuse of “observation status” determinations by hospitals is the subject of ongoing legal challenges, but Medicare beneficiaries need to be aware of why “observation status” should be opposed by an patient immediately upon admission to the hospital.

The Center for Medicare Advocacy, which has worked for thirty years on behalf of Medicare beneficiaries through direct client support and class action litigation, recently published an “infographic” that explains how observation status works and what to do at the time of admission to help prevent falling into the observation status trap.

You can download the infographic at the Center for Medicare Advocacy’s website.

Read more about observation status here.