If signed into law, the Improving Access to Medicare Coverage Act would amend the Social Security Act to allow individuals receiving "outpatient observation services" in hospitals to be considered "inpatients" so they may satisfy the three-day requirement for Medicare coverage of post-hospitalization care in skilled nursing facilities. Currently, Medicare does not cover skilled nursing care for those who spent time in the hospital under outpatient observation, and they are billed unfairly for necessary medical care.
Rep. Joe Courtney (CT-2) introduced H.R. 1179 on March 14, 2014. It has since been referred to the Committee on Ways and Means.