News & Analysis as of

Sunshine Act Update: CMS Streamlines Reporting for CME-Related Payments in 2016

CMS issues a Final Rule that removes the exclusion for reporting of continuing education payments to certain accredited organizations, while also clarifying previously existing parameters that may preclude reporting of these...more

Global Surgery and 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

On July 21, 2014, I posted the proposed Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, and described the intent by CMS to eliminate global surgery. On November 13, 2014, CMS issued the final 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, and...more

CMS Publishes Additional (but Limited) Guidance on the Coverage with Evidence Development Process

On November 20, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) published its latest round of guidance on its Coverage with Evidence Development (“CED”) policy for selected items and services under the Medicare...more

Final CMS CoPs: Navigating Revised Medical Staff Standards and New Requirements

In this presentation: - Hospital Governing Board - Hospital Medical Staff – Membership - Hospital Medical Staff – Separate or Unified? - Ordering Hospital Outpatient Services - Excerpt from...more

Blog: CMS Explains New Data Matching and Resubmission Process During Open Payments Webinar Today

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) held a webinar today to address the process for correcting and resubmitting records that were removed from the Open Payments system in August 2014 by CMS due to data...more

CMS Finalizes Proposal to Remove Continuing Medical Education Exclusion from Sunshine Act Regulations

On October 31, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued its final Medicare physician fee schedule rule for CY 2015 (the Final Rule), which also includes certain changes to the Sunshine Regulations. ...more

CMS Announces CY 2015 Home Health Prospective Payment System Rates

On October 30, 2014, CMS issued a final rule for Medicare Home Health Prospective Payment System (HH PPS) rates for CY 2015. The final rule estimates that Medicare payments to home health agencies (HHAs) in CY 2015 will be...more

CMS Releases CY 2015 Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule

On October 31, 2014, CMS released the CY 2015 Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) final rule. CMS calculated the conversion factor using the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). Due to the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014, there...more

Blog: CMS Exempts CME and Makes Other Sunshine Reporting Changes

Late last week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the 2015 physician payment fee schedule, which includes changes to the Final Rule implementing the federal Sunshine law. ...more

CME Payments Largely Remain Excluded From Sunshine Act Reporting

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) has finalized changes to a number of reporting requirements under the regulations implementing the Physician Payments Sunshine Act (“Final Rule”). When CMS proposed...more

CMS Releases the 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (Medicare PFS) on October 31, 2014. The final rule updates payment policies and payment rates for services furnished to...more

Halloween Announcement of CMS Payment Changes

Maybe it was a coincidence, but CMS waited until Halloween to announce its final 2015 payment policies for physicians and hospital outpatient departments. While the announced changes are not really scary, one evoked sharp...more

Health Care Reform Implementation Update

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) began sending reminders last week that open enrollment begins on November 15; CMS’s Marketplace CEO, Kevin Counihan, said that end-to-end testing of HealthCare.gov was...more

$840 Million Available to Drive Practice Transformation

After a fairly quiet year in terms of new funding announcements, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) has released an $840 million solicitation that seeks to drive 150,000 clinicians toward delivering...more

Critical Access Hospital Soothsayers and the 96-Hour Physician Certification Requirement

This year critical access hospitals (CAH) have struggled to implement procedures to comply with both the "two-midnight" rule and the 96-hour physician certification requirement. The combination of both puts physicians in a...more

Hardship Exception Applications to Avoid the 2015 Medicare Payment Adjustment Due November 30, 2014

Last week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it intends to reopen the submission period for hardship exception applications for eligible professionals and eligible hospitals to avoid the 2015...more

CMS Publishes Open Payments Data Detailing Payments and Transfers of Value Provided by Life Sciences Manufacturers to Physicians...

On September 30, 2014, CMS published data regarding payments and transfers of value that pharmaceutical, biologic, and medical device manufacturers provided to U.S. physicians and teaching hospitals during the period August 1...more

Sunshine Act Update: First Data Set Published

On September 30, the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published the first set of data reported by pharmaceutical, medical device, biotechnology and medical supply companies, and group purchasing organizations...more

Blog: Sunshine Act Media Coverage and CMS’s Response Today

The Open Payments database has been live for a week now. There has been media coverage, but most has not been the type that many expected. The coverage to date has largely centered on the significant challenges associated...more

CMS Announces Launch of Open Payments Database: $3.5 Billion Paid to Physicians and Teaching Hospitals

The Open Payments database (the “Database”) is now live, and the first round of data is available to the public on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) website. This first round of data reflects “nearly 4.4...more

CMS Refuses to Count Family Practice Residents Who Train in Family Practice Settings

Last Friday Eastern Maine Medical Center sued Health & Human Services over the way CMS counted the number of residents in its graduate medical education program. According to the complaint, CMS refuses to count some of the...more

Health Law Pulse - September 2014

In This Issue: - U.S. Court of Appeals Holds that Physicians’ Employer is Personally Liable for Costs Associated with The H- 1B Process and Obtaining a Waiver of the Two- Year Home Residency Requirement - CMS...more

Face-to-Face Medicare Reimbursement Requirements for Home Health Certification

CMS has announced its concern regarding the level of compliance for documenting the face-to-face elements necessary for home health care certification....more

Want To Complain About The 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule? Take A Number.

Apparently Americans feel that way about Medicare’s traditional fee-for-service physician compensation schedule. Everybody complains about it, but nobody likes any proposed changes. That’s clear from the reaction to the...more

A Primer on Medicare Requirements for Physician Supervision of "Incident to" Services

Services provided by a physician’s auxiliary staff that are “incident to” the physician’s services are paid under the physician fee schedule at a higher rate, as though the physician had personally furnished the services....more

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