News & Analysis as of

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

Is CMS Feeling the Sunshine Heat? – Part 2

As follow-up to our recent post on the issues that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is experiencing with its Open Payments database, there is new information that additional data also may be excluded when...more

AHA Responds to Proposed Home Health Face-to-Face Changes

As previously reported, on July 7, 2014, CMS issued the Calendar Year 2015 Home Health Prospective Payment System Proposed Rule (Proposed Rule). On August 18, 2014, the American Hospital Association (AHA) submitted comments...more

Sunshine Act Implementation Proceeds; CMS Re-opens the Open Payments System

On August 15, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) re-opened the Open Payments system for physicians and teaching hospitals to register, review, and, if needed, dispute information gathered to date. CMS...more

Here Comes the Sunshine Act

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a guide for physicians to prepare for the Dispute Resolution period of the Physician Payments Sunshine Act. The CMS guide is available on the CMS Open Payments...more

CMS Care Coordination Payments – A Boon to Doctors and Patients but Patient Participation Will be Essential

As the Affordable Care Act continues to mature, we are seeing new efforts by the Obama administration to incentivize care coordination across a spectrum of services provided to Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) patients. A New...more

Mailing of FMLA Notices Not Sufficient to Overcome Denial of Receipt by Employee

On August 5, 2014, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that an employer’s claim that it mailed to its employee a notice of rights under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA or Act) is not enough to rebut the employee’s...more

Academic Medical Centers: Clinical Care, Research and Teaching (or Maybe Not?)—Graduate Medical Education and the Future

In the world of healthcare policy and law, we usually discuss issues impacting providers, but don’t often report about the training and infrastructure behind what allows our healthcare system to treat patients in our...more

Dark Clouds Over Sunshine Act

Once again the Obama administration has been tripped up in launching a healthcare-related online system. This time the problem concerns the Physician Payments Sunshine Act—the act that is supposed to enable the public to see...more

Impact on Medicare Payments of Shift in Site of Care for Chemotherapy Administration

Two independent trends, acting in combination, are currently resulting in increased Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) chemotherapy payments. The first trend is a shift in the site of care for cancer patients from physicians’...more

FDA Set to Regulate LDTs - Citing Safety Concerns and Advanced Technologies

Advances in medical technology have increased the use of diagnostic tests to guide therapeutic decisions for many diseases and conditions, especially in the context of personalized medicine. Citing the need to ensure that...more

New Clarifications Affect Physician and Hospital Medicare Part B Billing for Services Provided by Nursing and Other Staff...

CMS recently released rules changing the requirements for Medicare coverage of services furnished incident to a physician’s, NP’s, or PA’s services. Howard Sollins, Donna Senft and Susan Turner explain the effect of the...more

Health Care: As Sunshine Act Deadlines Approach Physicians and Hospitals Should Prepare for Transparency in Their Financial...

On September 30, 2014, in accordance with the Federal Sunshine Act (the Sunshine Act), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will publically disclose payments and "other transfers of value" by pharmaceutical,...more

You Are Now on the Clock — Sunshine Act Dispute Window Now Open

Beginning Monday, July 14, 2014, the review, dispute and correction process outlined the National Physician Payment Transparency Program (also known as the "Sunshine Act") opens on CMS's Open Payments website. Physicians and...more

CMS Releases Proposed 2015 Physician Fee Schedule and Pojects 20.9% SGR Reduction

CMS has issued the Proposed 2015 Physician Fee Schedule and Fact Sheets for specific issues (ASC, ESRD, Home Health, Physician Quality Programs)....more

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