Ober|Kaler - Health Law Group

Summary of Major Provisions in the Proposed 2017 Physician Fee Schedule

The proposed Physician Fee Schedule for 2017 (PFS) includes several changes covering a litany of topics spanning from telehealth services to expanding the Diabetes Prevention Program Model. The following is a high-level summary…more
| Health

Bankruptcy Courts Lack Subject Matter Jurisdiction Over Medicare Issues, Eleventh Circuit Rules

In a detailed opinion that likely constitutes the last word on the matter, the Eleventh Circuit recently held in Fla. Agency for Health Care Administration v. Bayou Shores SNF, LLC that bankruptcy courts lack jurisdiction over…more
| Administrative Law, Bankruptcy, Civil Procedure, Government Contracting, Health

Senate Finance Committee Report Concludes Stark Law Change Is Necessary to Drive Health Care Reform

In its report, Why Stark, Why Now? [PDF], released June 30, 2016, the Senate Committee on Finance outlines suggested changes to the physician self-referral law, 42 U.S.C. § 1395nn, (the Stark law) in order to facilitate and…more
| Health

OIG Permits Copayment Coupon Arrangement for Statutorily Non-Covered Drug in Advisory Opinion 16-07

On June 20, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a favorable Advisory Opinion 16-07 regarding a savings card program (Card Program) under which Medicare Part D…more
| Health, Insurance, Science, Computers, & Technology

Health Care Fraud Prosecutions: Strong Seas and High Winds Ahead for Individuals and Corporations

During the past nine months, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has made several significant policy pronouncements that impact health care organizations and individual providers. These directives and initiatives reflect that…more
| Criminal Law, Health

Telemedicine Gains Further Acceptance

Last month the American Medical Association (AMA) adopted ethical guidance related to the practice of telemedicine and telehealth which further expands upon the policy report on Coverage and Payment for Telemedicine [PDF] it…more
| Health, Science, Computers, & Technology

Proposed Provider-Based Changes Pose Significant Problems for Hospitals

As we reported in a Payment Matters article last November 12, 2015, Section 603 of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 changes the payment rules applicable to off-campus, provider-based locations that are new as of November 2,…more
| Health

Home Health PPS CY 2017 Proposed Rule: Payments Rebased, Quality Measures Updated

Downward adjustments to home health episode payments arising from rebasing of the national payment rates, case mix adjustments, and an increase to the fixed dollar loss ratio for calculating outliers will result in an overall 1%…more
| Health

Medicare Appeals Backlog: HHS' Response to the Decade-Long Delay in Reviewing Appeals

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published its proposed rule [PDF] revamping the Medicare appeals process at the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) level on July 5, 2016. The proposed rule extensively revises…more
| Administrative Law, Civil Procedure, Health

New CMS Final Fire Safety Regulations

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has updated its fire safety regulations governing certain Medicare and Medicaid participating health care providers. These include hospitals, critical access hospitals (CAHs),…more
| Health

CMS Announces "Pause" in QIO Review of Inpatient Admissions

Last week CMS announced a temporary "pause" in the review of inpatient admissions by the Beneficiary and Family Centered Care Quality Improvement Organizations (QIOs). CMS posted this announcement on its Inpatient Hospital…more
| Administrative Law, Health

CMS Limits MAC and QIC Scope of Review

Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) and Qualified Independent Contractors (QICs) should not expand redeterminations and reconsiderations of claims denied on the basis of complex pre–or post–pay payments or automated…more
| Administrative Law, Civil Procedure, Health

OCR Clarifies Parameters of Covered Entities' Fees for PHI Copies

The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) recently released new guidance and FAQs (OCR Guidance) addressing individuals’ rights to access their protected health information (PHI) under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability…more
| Conflict of Laws, Consumer Protection, Health, Privacy

OIG Approves Wholly Owned Group Purchasing Organization

In Advisory Opinion 16-06, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) approved a proposal whereby the ownership of a group purchasing organization (GPO) would be restructured so that the GPO will be wholly owned by the same corporate…more
| Business Organizations, Health

CMS Announces Plans to Streamline the Stark Self-Referral Disclosure Protocol

On May 6, 2016, CMS published a notice (Notice), required under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), seeking public comment on its plans to revise the information collected under the Medicare Self-referral Disclosure Protocol…more
| Administrative Law, Health
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