Baker Ober Health Law

Final Rule Implements Quality Payment Program under MACRA

If you are a physician, mid-level provider, or work with those providers, then you have been bombarded with new acronyms for new programs and promises to remove older acronyms from your Medicare vocabulary. Medicare…more
| Health

The 21st Century Cures Act

Signed into law by President Obama on December 13, 2016, the 21st Century Cures Act (Act) was overwhelmingly supported in both houses of Congress and comprises a dizzying array of provisions aimed to improve and modernize…more
| Health, Science, Computers, & Technology

U.S. District Court for District of Columbia Requires HHS to Eliminate Medicare Appeals Backlog by December 31, 2020

On December 5, 2016, a U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted summary judgment in American Hospital Association, et al., v. Burwell, in favor of the American Hospital Association (AHA) in its quest to reduce…more
| Administrative Law, Civil Procedure, Civil Remedies, Health

CMS Publishes the Medicare Outpatient Observation Notice Form and Instructions

On December 8, 2016, CMS published the final version of the Medicare Outpatient Observation Notice (MOON) that hospitals and critical access hospitals (referred collectively as "hospitals" herein) must use to provide notice to…more
| Health

OIG Finalizes New and Amended Anti-Kickback and CMP Safe Harbors

On December 7, 2016, the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General (OIG) issued a final rule to establish new safe harbors under the anti-kickback statute and civil monetary penalty (CMP) rules, as…more
| Administrative Law, Health, Science, Computers, & Technology

OIG Finalizes CMP Regulations, Largely as Proposed

On December 7, 2016, the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) finalized [PDF] its proposal to update the civil monetary penalty (CMP) regulations – namely, incorporate new CMP authorities…more
| Health

OIG Approves Another Medigap/Preferred Hospital Network Arrangement in Advisory Opinion 16-11

On November 3, 2016, the OIG issued another favorable Advisory Opinion, No. 16–11, regarding an agreement between a Medigap insurer and preferred hospital network. The OIG has issued several opinions regarding similar…more
| Health

OIG Still Rejects Lab's Free Labeling Services for Dialysis Facilities in Advisory Opinion No. 16-12

8 Years and New Reimbursement Methodology Later - On November 28, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued an unfavorable advisory opinion, No. 16-12, regarding a…more
| Health, Science, Computers, & Technology

First Stand-Alone Telemedicine Legislation Close to Becoming Law

The Expanding Capacity for Health Outcomes (ECHO) Act (S.2873) was sent to the President for approval on December 8, 2016. The ECHO Act was passed by the House on December 6, 2016, and prior to that, by the Senate on November…more
| Health, Science, Computers, & Technology

CMS Final Rule and 21st Century Cures Act Include Good and Bad News for Provider-Based Sites

CMS recently published its final outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS) rule, which includes its new policies governing payment related to services furnished at off-campus provider-based departments (OPBDs). 81 Fed. Reg…more
| Health

It Ain't Over 'Till It's Over – First Circuit Rejects Settlement Agreements Between Providers and Intermediary and Upholds Cost Report Reopenings

On October 27, 2016, a three-judge panel for the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit issued an opinion concluding that a Medicare fiscal intermediary (Intermediary) does not have the authority to enter into a…more
| Administrative Law, Civil Procedure, Civil Remedies, Health

New POS Code for Telehealth Distant Site Providers

A new Place of Services or POS code for Telehealth services (POS 02) will go into effect on January 1, 2017. The descriptor for the code, which is for use by the physician or other clinician furnishing telehealth services from a…more
| Health

CMS Releases the 2016 OPPS Final Rule

On November 1, 2016, CMS published its final policy changes, quality provisions, and payment rates for 2017, as they relate to the Medicare Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) and Ambulatory Surgical Center…more
| Health

Home Health Agency PPS Update for 2017: Quality, Quality, Quality

On November 3rd, CMS published the Final Prospective Payment System (PPS) Rule for Home Health Agencies (HHAs) for CY 2017 at 81 FR 76702 (Nov. 3, 2016). The rule implements annual changes to the PPS rate for HHAs and represents…more
| Health

D.C. District Court Bucks the Trend and Rules for Hospital in Provider Tax Case

Many states assess taxes against hospitals and other providers as a means of funding their Medicaid and other healthcare-related programs. The revenue generated by the taxes is used, with CMS’s approval, to fund Medicaid…more
| Administrative Law, Civil Procedure, Government Contracting, Health, Taxation
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