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Holdout States Loosen Restrictions on Telemedicine but Obstacles Remain

A few months ago, two states that previously imposed onerous telemedicine requirements – Texas and Oklahoma – enacted laws that loosen restrictions on telemedicine providers and generally fall into line with what a vast...more

Drug Makers Not Off the Hook as States Continue to Take Action to Control Drug Prices

Earlier this month, two states – Maryland and Nevada – passed legislation aimed at controlling drug prices. The two laws are being touted by proponents as decisive action against pharmaceutical manufacturers. Opponents note...more

CBO Greenlights Telehealth Provisions in Senate’s CHRONIC Care Act

Last week, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) concluded that a key piece of telehealth legislation, the CHRONIC Care Act of 2017, would not, overall, increase or decrease Medicare spending. This score is significant as it...more

GAO Report: Medicare Reimbursement Policies Impede Telehealth Adoption

Although telehealth has the potential to improve or maintain quality of care for Medicare beneficiaries, payment and coverage restrictions create barriers that prevent providers from fully utilizing telehealth technologies....more

States Continue Trend to Reduce Telemedicine Barriers

In 2016 and now in early 2017, state legislatures and regulatory boards continue to enact laws and rules setting telemedicine practice standards. Such standards generally include clarifying the definition of telemedicine as...more

Medicare Advisors Debate Part B Drug Payment Reforms

Last week, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (the “Commission”) debated a package of policy reforms that would change the way Medicare reimburses physicians for Medicare Part B drugs. In the midst of calls to lower...more

At Long Last, OIG Issues Final Rule for Beneficiary Inducement Safe Harbors

More than two years since issuing the proposed rule, the HHS Office of the Inspector General (OIG) issued the long-awaited and highly anticipated final rule (the Final Rule) that provides amendments to the Anti-Kickback...more

In the Wake of the Election, What’s Next for State Drug Pricing Initiatives?

A Trump victory was not the only surprise on election night. California’s drug pricing initiative, which would have required state agencies to negotiate drug prices at least as low as those paid by the U.S. Department of...more

Billing Companies Beware – OIG Signals a Crackdown on Fraud and Abuse at All Levels

In an unprecedented administrative action, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Office of the Inspector General (“HHS-OIG”) penalized a medical billing company for preparing and submitting claims to Medicare for...more

GAO Report Suggests Discount Coupons Impact Medicare Spending for Part B Drugs

Last month, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report in which it found that manufacturer drug coupon programs for privately insured patients could potentially cause the Medicare Part B program to...more

Texas Medical Board’s Appeal Must Proceed Under Existing Jurisdiction Arguments

In another procedural defeat for the Texas Medical Board (the “Board”) over its embattled telemedicine rule, last week, a federal judge held that the Board waited too long to request certification of appeal to the Fifth...more

States’ Efforts for Drug Price Transparency Stymied by the Pharmaceutical Industry

As we previously reported, in 2015 and early 2016, bills and voter initiatives were introduced in several states that would impose drug pricing controls and transparency requirements on pharmaceutical manufacturers. Of...more

Texas Medical Board Seeks State Action Immunity Protection in Fifth Circuit Brief

On June 17, the Texas Medical Board (“Board”) filed a brief with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals reiterating that the Board’s rulemaking processes are protected under the state action immunity doctrine, noting that the...more

Legislation to Reduce Consumer Cost-Sharing Takes a Back Burner in the Drug Pricing Debate

As discussed in our recent post, states have turned up the heat on drug companies through both legislation and voter initiatives that would require drug companies to disclose their pricing mechanisms for certain high-cost...more

States Step Up Efforts on Drug Pricing Initiatives

A few months ago, we noted that states were jumping into the drug pricing fray largely driven by a lack of federal action and a rising tide of public discontent. State legislation has taken various forms but most of the...more

U.S. Department of Defense Expands Telemedicine Access for Military Members

Last month, Jonathan Woodson, M.D., the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs for the U.S. Department of Defense, issued a memorandum that effectively changes the Military Health System (“MHS”) policy on...more

Amidst the Raucous Debate in D.C., States Quietly Take Action on Rising Prescription Drug Prices

Rising drug prices and attempts to contain drug costs continue to take center stage at the federal level – particularly in the ramp-up to the 2016 presidential election. In January 2015, a bill was introduced that would...more

Telemedicine – 2015 Year in Review

As the year winds down, we look back on the significant developments in telemedicine in 2015 as well as look forward to what 2016 will bring. The number of providers offering telemedicine and telehealth services dramatically...more

Arkansas Medical Board Proposes to Relax State Telemedicine Laws

Last month, the Arkansas State Medical Board’s Telemedicine Advisory Committee indicated that it was in the process of drafting a rule that would allow establishment of a physician-patient relationship through the use of...more

American Academy of Pediatrics Recommends Limits on Telemedicine

On June 29, 2015, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) published a policy statement supporting the use of telemedicine in the practice of pediatrics as long as telemedicine technologies are used “in support of and...more

Telehealth Roundup: Federal Bill Seeks to Expand Medicare Use of Telehealth; Delaware and Connecticut Update Telemedicine Laws

On July 7th, the House introduced much anticipated bipartisan telehealth legislation. The Medicare Telehealth Parity Act of 2015, introduced by Representative Mike Thompson (D-CA) and co-sponsored by Representatives Gregg...more

Part D Woes, According to the OIG

On June 23, 2015, the OIG issued two reports focusing on fraud, waste, and abuse in the Part D program, the first “Ensuring the Integrity of Medicare Part D” and the second “Questionable Billing Practices and Geographic...more

AMA Ethical Guidelines on Telemedicine Tabled for Further Review

On Monday, during the annual meeting of the American Medical Association (AMA) House of Delegates, the delegates voted to table a proposed measure to adopt ethical guidelines for physicians who provide telemedicine services....more

21st Century Cures Legislation “Punts” on Telemedicine

On May 13, 2015, the House Energy and Commerce Committee released the latest draft of its 21st Century Cures Legislation. The proposed legislation includes certain telehealth-related provisions that, among other things,...more

DOJ and HHS Annual Report Highlights $3.3 Billion in Settlements and Judgments in FY 2014

On March 19, 2015, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued their annual Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control (HCFAC) Program report highlighting that the HCFAC Program obtained...more

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