News & Analysis as of

CMS Proposes Adoption of Updated Life Safety Code

Wednesday morning, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule regarding adopting the 2012 edition of the Life Safety Code (LSC). CMS states the updated code contains new provisions that are...more

Is the Irreversible Truly Unforeseeable?: The Law of Suicide

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of suicide deaths in 2010 was 38,364, making it the tenth leading cause of death in America. For younger demographics, the numbers are even more...more

The regulation of cosmetic interventions in the UK: toothless rhetoric or industry overhaul?

This Reed Smith client alert looks at the UK government’s response to the independent review of the regulation of cosmetic interventions in the UK. The key issues In recent years, cosmetic procedures have become widely...more

Halifax Reportedly Settles Landmark Stark Case

According to minutes filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Halifax Hospital Medical Center (Halifax) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) have reached a settlement in the pending False...more

TREAT THEM RIGHT: The joys and pitfalls of treating doctors

Something came up for opposing counsel at the last minute. He didn’t show. That left us – the court reporter, videographer, and me – sitting in the conference room with the treating doctor deponent. The one who had been too...more

Ohio Governor Signs Legislation Requested by BakerHostetler Clients

Governor John Kasich last week signed House Bill 139 to allow advanced practice registered nurses and physician assistants to admit patients to Ohio hospitals. The bill was introduced at the request of BakerHostetler...more

New Oklahoma security law requires fingerprint-based background checks on certain healthcare employees: Staggered implementation...

Beginning March 1, 2014, and phasing in over the next several months, a new Oklahoma law requires certain long-term care, residential, and health care providers to perform eligibility screening and national fingerprint-based...more

OSHA Signals an Increased Focus on Hospital Industry

On January 15, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) launched a new, online compliance assistance tool for hospitals called, “Worker Safety in Hospitals: Caring for our...more

Take Two Aspirin and Call Me in the Morning: Avoiding Labor Relations Headaches With ACOs

The Accountable Care Organization (ACO) offers the promise of shared savings when the ACO delivers high-quality healthcare more cost effectively. Without question, ACOs will change the way healthcare providers do business....more

Proposal Seeks To Make California The Artificer And Enforcer Of Caps On Executive Compensation

Earlier this month, Secretary of State Debra Bowen announced that the proponents of an initiative measure could begin collecting petition signatures for their measure. If this measure makes it on to the ballot and is...more

Health Alert (Australia) - 20 January 2014

In This Issue: Judgments, Legislation, and Reports. - Excerpt from Judgments: Commonwealth - 15 January 2014 - Short v Ambulance Victoria [2014] FCA 3 - The applicant's employment as a...more

Benevolent Gesture Law Doesn’t Bar Malpractice Suits

Sometimes an apology is all it takes to mend fences ? at least the state of Pennsylvania hopes this is the case for healthcare providers who own up to their negligent actions. Recently, Governor Tom Corbett signed Senate Bill...more

Doctor Blames Poor Medical Care For Deaths At The Milwaukee County Mental Health Complex

Brandon Johnson died at the Milwaukee County Mental Health Complex (“the Complex”) in October 2012. Mr. Johnson died due to complications from a broken neck....more

Important 2014 Tax Developments

The list is not intended to be exhaustive. - Income: IRS rules that incentives to health care professionals and hospitals for using electronic records are income to those receiving the...more

Health Law Blog: Court's Decision Another Reminder to Hospitals To Use Caution in Calculating Physician Productivity Bonuses

November, a federal district court granted partial summary judgment for the Department of Justice in U.S. ex. Rel. Baklid-Kunz v. Halifax Medical Center, ruling that productivity bonuses paid to employed physicians violated...more

No, You Can’t Impose An Unknown Regulation On A Hospice Provider And Attempt To Retroactively Deny Payment

In December, 2013, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court ruled that a hospice facility’s due process rights were violated when the Department of Public Welfare (“DPW”) imposed an additional requirement without giving notice to...more

Also in the News

President Obama Signs Pathway for SGR Reform Act of 2013 – On December 26, 2013, President Obama signed the Pathway for SGR Reform Act of 2013 (the “Act”), preventing the scheduled payment reduction for...more

California Court Clarifies Controversial Questions About Medical Staff Peer Review Decisions and the Power of Hospital Boards

Two recent California Court of Appeal opinions decide issues of first impression in the medical staff peer review arena, helping to resolve questions that have long been uncertain and controversial. In the first of the two...more

SGR-Driven Payment Reduction Postponed Again

As part of the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (BBA), Congress enacted a number of payment reforms designed to curb the growth of expenditures under Medicare Part B. One of the more notable of those provisions was the Sustainable...more

To Terminate or Not to Terminate: Provider Exclusion Laws and Why They Matter

A robust, quality network of providers is essential to the operation of any managed care organization (MCO). Credentialing, quality of care, or other legitimate business concerns frequently require an MCO to evaluate removal...more

NPDB Guidebook revision would clarify investigation reporting issues

Physicians always have been justifiably concerned about reports to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB) regarding malpractice payments and adverse peer review actions. Two areas of frequent uncertainty have...more

Physician Employment Termination Without Cause Reported to NPDB

A strange result in Langenberg v. Warren General Hospital, suggests you should pay close attention to the termination language in hospital-physician employment contracts. Warren General Hospital terminated Dr. Langenberg...more

Congress Passes 3 Month SGR Reprieve: .5% Medicare Physician Increase

The AMA Wire reports action on the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. The payment increase staves off a 24 percent cut required by the failed SGR formula and buys three months for Congress to complete its work on SGR repeal...more

NLRB's Heavy Hand Against Wal-Mart Has Implications for Healthcare Providers

On November 19, 2013, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced that its general counsel has authorized the issuance of multiple complaints against Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (Wal-Mart) over a variety of statements made...more

CMS Announces Plans to Modernize and Update the Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule

On November 27, 2013, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services posted the final 2014 Medicare physician fee schedule and, in it, announced plans to change how and how much Medicare pays for clinical diagnostic laboratory...more

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