Health Care Providers

News & Analysis as of

The Joint Commission Bans Text Messaging for Patient Care Orders

The Joint Commission, which accredits hospitals and other health care organizations, recently announced it will not permit hospitals and other health care organizations to use secure text messaging platforms to transmit...more

Birmingham Medical News: End in Sight for Medicare ALJ Backlog?

As providers who are currently undergoing a Medicare claims appeal know, there is a lengthy delay to having an appeal actually heard by an Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”). Some estimates indicate that it will currently take...more

CMS Appeals the Injunction Halting the Nursing Home Arbitration Ban—Where Will it Go From Here?

Few things have had the post-acute care industry on the edge of their seats like the ban on arbitration agreements and the subsequent injunction preventing its application. On January 5, 2017, CMS filed a Notice of Appeal...more

Physician Liability for Death of Nonviable Fetus

If an obstetrician’s negligence causes the miscarriage of a nonviable fetus—i.e., one that couldn’t live outside the womb–does the patient have a cause of action for wrongful death? In Alabama the answer is yes, according to...more

Varsity Healthcare Partners Closes Second Fund at $300 Million

Varsity Healthcare Partners (VHP) has announced the closing of its second equity fund, Varsity Healthcare Partners II, at $300 million. The fund will invest in healthcare services platforms....more

HHS Ordered To Eliminate Medicare Appeals Backlog By 2021

On January 4, 2017, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia rejected a request by the Secretary of HHS asking the court to reconsider its decision that requires HHS to eliminate the backlog of Medicare claims...more

OIG Interprets and Incorporates Statutory Exceptions to CMP Law

As of January 6, 2017, final rules published by the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General (the “OIG”) implementing certain exceptions to the Civil Monetary Penalty law (“CMP”)...more

Does Compelling the Disclosure of Documents Allegedly Protected by Attorney-Client Privilege Constitute a Final, Appealable Order?

Last month, the Ohio Supreme Court issued a ruling in Burnham v. Cleveland Clinic, 2016-Ohio-8000, on an interesting issue – “whether an order compelling the production of documents allegedly protected by the attorney-client...more

New Year, New Possibilities: OIG Final Rule Amends Beneficiary Inducement Rules

The Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) of the Department of Health and Human Services has issued a final rule (“Final Rule”) adding new safe harbors to the federal anti-kickback statute, amending existing safe harbors, and...more

Federal Court Enjoins Part of ACA Final Non-Discrimination Rule

On December 31, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas issued a nationwide injunction in Franciscan Alliance, Inc. v. Burwell, N.D. Tex., No. 16-cv-108, holding that portions of the final rule issued...more

Patient Records Requests: What You Need to Know [Video]

Our guest on Healthcare Matters is Richard J. Rymond, an attorney at Reminger Co., LPA, who specializes in in medical, dental and other forms of professional, commercial and general liability. He is the Dental Liability...more

New Hampshire Psychiatric Hospital Patient Records Posted Online by Former Patient

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services has notified up to 15,000 patients of its psychiatric hospital (New Hampshire Hospital) that their names, addresses, Social Security numbers, Medicaid ID numbers and...more

The Old and the New – Day 3 Notes from the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference

Day 3 of the JPMorgan healthcare conference was one of striking contrasts between the old and the new. (And, by the way, the rain finally stopped for a day, but it will be back tomorrow to finish off the last day of the...more

Breach of Privacy Prompts Breach of Etiquette: DHHS Sets New Precedent in Privacy Breach Enforcement

On January 9, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) took action against a health system for non-timely reporting of a breach of protected health information. It was the first...more

Food for Thought (and Health): Day 2 Notes from the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference

Addressing the Social Determinants of Health: Is the healthcare industry pushing a rock up a hill? We collectively are trying to provide healthcare with improved quality and reduced cost, but the structure of the nation’s...more

Joint Commission Confirms Ban on Texting of Patient Care Orders

After briefly considering a reversal of its prohibition on texting orders, The Joint Commission (TJC), in consultation with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), announced last month that its ban would continue...more

Managing the Risks and Benefits of an On-Site Automatic Defibrillator Program

Sudden cardiac arrest (“SCA”) is the largest cause of natural death in the United States and is responsible for approximately half of all heart disease deaths. SCA, however, is not a “heart attack” (i.e. an artery blockage)...more

Medical Group Practice Can Once Again Employ PTs and PTAs

In December 2016, the South Carolina Supreme Court denied a petition for re-hearing, resolving a long standing dispute and allowing medical practices to employ directly physical therapists (“PTs”) and physical therapist...more

CMS to Host Call on Transitioning Physician Quality Reporting to MIPS (Jan. 24)

On January 24, 2017, CMS is hosting a call to discuss how to complete the final reporting period for the “legacy” Medicare physician quality reporting programs (Physician Quality Reporting System, Medicare Electronic Health...more

HHS OIG Revises Various Safe Harbors Related to Beneficiary Inducements

On Dec. 7, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS’) Office of Inspector General (OIG) published a final rule revising federal Anti-Kickback Statute (AKS) safe harbors and the beneficiary inducement...more

CMS Again Extends HHA/Ambulance Enrollment Moratoria in Selected States

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is extending for six months its current moratoria on the Medicare, Medicaid, and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) enrollment of new nonemergency ground ambulance...more

OIG Issues Annual Solicitation of Suggestions for New Fraud Alerts, Anti-Kickback Safe Harbors

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is inviting public recommendations for new or modified safe harbor provisions under the federal anti-kickback statute. The OIG also...more

CMS Corrects Final 2017 OPPS/ASC Rule, Results in Slight Payment Increase

CMS has published a notice correcting technical errors in its November 14, 2016 final rule with comment period updating the Medicare hospital outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS) and ambulatory surgical center payment...more

Looking Forward/Looking Backward – Day 1 Notes from the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference

A large amount of wind, much discussion about the U.S healthcare, and the public getting soaked again – if you were thinking about Washington, DC and the new Congress, you’re 3,000 miles away from the action. This is the week...more

ACA Relief Brightens 2017 for Small Employers

On December 13, 2016, President Obama signed the 21st Century Cures Act (the Act), which provides government funding and support for a number of health care initiatives. Significantly, the last section of the Act eases...more

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