ALJ Medicare

News & Analysis as of

Recent Developments in Litigation Challenging the Medicare Appeals Delays: Is Victory Likely for Medicare Providers?

On September 19, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia (D.D.C.) refused to stay a highly anticipated case seeking to force the government to comply with statutory deadlines governing the Medicare appeals...more

A Favorable, New Climate for Challenging Medicare Appeals

Over the past decade, health care providers seeking to challenge Medicare claim denials have faced increasing delays in reaching what many consider the most important step in the Medicare appeals process - a hearing before an...more

CMS Still Finding Its Way Through Significant Medicare Appeals Backlog – Proposes New Rule in an Effort to Catch Up

In the proposed rule, CMS focuses on taking administrative actions to alleviate the backlog, including introducing the concept of precedential decisions, delegating certain administrative law judge tasks to “attorney...more

HHS Proposes Rules to Eliminate Backlog … in 5 Years

On June 28, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a series of regulatory changes in the Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) designed to curtail the massive backlog of Medicare claim appeals....more

HHS Proposes Rules to Streamline the Medicare Appeals Process to Address Backlog

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued a proposed rule intended to address the significant backlog resulting from “an unprecedented and sustained increase” in Medicare appeals. According to HHS, its...more

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

HHS Proposes Significant Changes to ALJ Hearing Procedures

HHS announced a Proposed Rule on July 5, 2016 aimed at reducing the backlog of appeals at the Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals (OMHA) and Departmental Appeals Board (DAB) for Medicare payment and coverage...more

GAO Highlights Significant Backlog in Medicare Appeals, Routine ALJ Failure to Meet Statutory Deadlines

The Medicare appeals process has not been able to keep up with an explosion in the number of volume, particularly at the administrative law judge (ALJ) level (Level 3), resulting in significant backlogs and widespread failure...more

HHS May Be Forced to Meet Statutory Deadlines for ALJ Appeals

On February 9, 2016, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reversed a district court’s dismissal for lack of jurisdiction in the American Hospital Association v. Burwell case. ...more

AGG Helps Hospice Weather the Perfect Storm of Aggressive Medicare Payment Denials and Administrative Appeal Backlog

Medicare’s implementation of post-payment review through private contractors who are overly aggressive in denying payments, combined with a severe backlog of cases in queue for hearing before an Administrative Law Judge...more

Four Key Takeaways on the Expansion of the Medicare Appeals Settlement Conference Project

On October 15, 2015, the Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals (“OMHA”) conducted a teleconference to address Phase II of the Settlement Conference Facilitation (“SCF”) Pilot, effective October 1, 2015. SCF, launched in...more

OIG Hospital Compliance Audits: Is Your Number Up? Are You Ready?

In its Work Plan for Fiscal Year 2012, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced it would begin reviews of Medicare payments to hospitals to determine compliance...more

OMHA Expands Settlement Conference Facilitation Pilot

The HHS Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals (OMHA) has announced that it is expanding its Settlement Conference Facilitation pilot’s eligibility criteria to include more pending appeals. As previously reported, this pilot...more

Alabama CON Report

I. SHPDA Administrative Report - AL2015-022, Gulf Health Hospitals, d/b/a Thomas Hospital, Daphne, AL: Proposes to establish a freestanding emergency department (FED). The project was approved with stipulation of...more

Only One Short Bite of the Apple: Change in the Medicare Enrollment Appeals Process

In keeping with the trend to strengthen its authority to deny an enrollment or revoke Medicare billing privileges, CMS has modified the appeals process in a manner that will significantly shorten the time allotted to mount an...more

CMS Limits the Scope of Review for Certain Redeterminations and Reconsiderations

For providers who have received inconsistent or varying reasons for denial while navigating through the Medicare appeals process, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has provided much-needed relief in the form...more

Affirming the Need to Fix the Medicare Appeals Backlog: The AFIRM Act of 2015

If you are one of the many health care providers wanting to appeal a Medicare contractor’s reimbursement decision, you may need to be prepared for a long wait. Over the last few years, the backlog of appeals to the...more

Recent Ninth Circuit En Banc Decision Makes It Easier for Relators to be an Original Source and the First- to-File

On July 7, 2015, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an en banc decision that potentially makes it easier for relators to prevail on pending False Claim Act qui tam suits and bring new actions in...more

Senate Committee Passes Bill Addressing Medicare Appeals Inefficiencies

On June 3, 2015, the Senate Finance Committee passed an original bill that aims to streamline and improve the Medicare Audit and Appeals Process. The Medicare appeals process has recently faced scrutiny from industry leaders...more

No Judicial Relief to the ALJ Waiting Game — Yet

In May 2014, the American Hospital Association filed suit against the United States Department of Health and Human Services seeking to compel Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) to comply with applicable statutory deadlines for...more

CMS Provides for Greater MAC Involvement in ALJ Hearings

CMS recently issued Transmittal 543, Change Request 8501 in which it instructs Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) to, among other things, defend their medical review decisions through the Administrative Law Judge...more

Medicare Beneficiaries Sue HHS Over 489-Day Backlog in ALJ Appeals

The Center for Medicare Advocacy (CMA) filed a complaint last week on behalf of five Medicare beneficiaries in federal district Court in Connecticut requesting a court order requiring the Secretary of HHS to clear a massive...more

OMHA Announces Two New Programs to Address Appeals Backlog

The Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals (OMHA), which oversees the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) level of appeal, recently posted two important announcements regarding a new Statistical Sampling Initiative (SSI) and...more

Medicare’s Recovery Audit Program (RAC Audits), An Update For Physicians

As many physicians now realize, Recovery Audit Contractors ("RAC") hired by Medicare have turned their attention from hospitals and are now actively pursuing claims submitted by physicians. An audit by a RAC can put a...more

OMHA Imposes 24-Month Stay for New ALJ Assignments; Announces Medicare Appellant Forum

The Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals (OMHA) has issued a Memorandum to OMHA Medicare appellants announcing a temporary stay, effective for cases filed on or after July 15, 2013, in the assignment of new requests for...more

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