Medicare

News & Analysis as of

The Latest On Statistical Sampling In FCA Cases

After waiting over a year to hear what the Fourth Circuit would say about statistical sampling in False Claims Act cases, the court of appeals recently chose to keep us in suspense. Despite initially granting the relators’...more

The Siege Continues: The Justice Department is Investigating Four Additional Medicare Advantage Plans

In our prior blog post, we reported that, at the request of the federal Department of Justice, the FCA qui tam whistleblower lawsuit in the case of United States ex rel Benjamin Poehling v. United HealthGroup, Inc., et. al....more

Health Care E-Note - March 2017

Like pain clinics and pharmacies, practitioners treating substance use disorder appear to be a target for federal enforcers. Under President Trump's administration and Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall, law enforcement...more

OIG Issues Favorable Advisory Opinion Relating to Free Hotel Lodging and Cafeteria Meals for Qualifying Patients

On March 3, 2017, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued Advisory Opinion 17-01. The Opinion relates to a request by an academic medical center (the “Requestor”) consisting...more

Excluded Party Cases Dominate OIG Published Self Disclosure Settlements

In 2013, the HHS Office of Inspector General issued revised protocols outlining the process through which health care providers are able to self-disclose and resolve potential liability under the OIG’s civil monetary penalty...more

Fifth Circuit Upholds CMS’s Critical Access Hospital Guidelines

CMS’s definitions of “primary roads” and “secondary roads,” as used to determine what constitutes a critical access hospital, withstood another court challenge last week....more

Health Alert (Australia) March 20, 2017

In This Issue: - Judgments; Legislation; and Reports. - Excerpts from Judgments: New South Wales - 15 March 2017 - NG v Chinese Medicine Board of Australia [2017] NSWCATOD 36 - PROFESSIONS AND...more

Mintz Levin Health Care Qui Tam Update - Recently Unsealed Whistleblower Cases: March 2017

Trends & Analysis - ..This issue looks at 18 health care–related qui tam cases that were unsealed in whole or in part in late October through November 2016. ..The cases identified were filed in federal district courts...more

HHS States that Agency Will Not Be Able to Meet Deadline to Clear Medicare Appeals Backlog

In a status report filed on March 6, 2017, HHS revised projections regarding the Medicare appeals backlog, which make it unable to meet a court-imposed deadline to eliminate the backlog by 2020. The status report was filed in...more

HHS Secretary Backs Medicare Balance Billing

Generally speaking, patients really dislike balance billing. Sometimes called “surprise billing,” “balance billing” refers to billing a patient for the difference between the health care provider’s charge and the amount a...more

Mintz Levin Health Care Qui Tam Update: Recently Unsealed Whistleblower Cases

Featured Unsealed Cases United States ex rel. Thomas v. Best Choice Home Health Care Agency, Inc., No. 2:13-cv-02209 (D. Kan.) - Complaint Filed: May 6, 2013 - Complaint Unsealed: October 24, 2016...more

Representatives Introduce Medicare Patient Access to Hospice Act

On March 1, 2017, Representatives Lynn Jenkins (R-KS-2) and Mike Thompson (D-CA-5) introduced the Medicare Patient Access to Hospice Act, H.R. 1284, to the 115th Congress. The bill was referred to the Committee on Ways and...more

False Claims Act Dangers on Display in Ruckh

A recent jury verdict in an FCA lawsuit pending in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida resulted in a not-so-subtle reminder of just how high the stakes can be in such litigation....more

Direct Primary Care: Getting Calls from Patients While Avoiding Calls from Law Enforcement

For providers interested in simplifying the provider-patient relationship, one option is direct primary care. Ironically, though, simplification can be complicated, particularly when the government is involved. One of the...more

Medicare Advisors Debate Part B Drug Payment Reforms

Last week, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (the “Commission”) debated a package of policy reforms that would change the way Medicare reimburses physicians for Medicare Part B drugs. In the midst of calls to lower...more

Regulatory “Freeze” Thaws for HHS: Medicare FY 2018 IPPS/LTCH Rulemaking Process Gets Underway

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is moving ahead on its annual Medicare hospital payment update rule – and it actually is ahead of last year’s pace. Specifically, on March 8, 2017 CMS sent to Office of...more

House ACA Bill Contains Numerous Provisions Affecting Employers

The House Committee on Ways and Means and the House Energy and Commerce Committee released proposed legislation on March 6, 2017, to partially repeal and replace parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which was signed into...more

2018 “Next Generation” Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Models

CMS is soliciting applications for 2018 Next Generation ACOs, an Innovation Center initiative intended to promote Medicare quality improvement and care coordination. Letters of intent are due May 4, 2017. ...more

2017 Washington, D.C. Preview

With President Donald Trump in the White House and Republican majorities in both the House and Senate, 2017 will see Republicans looking to undo much of President Obama's legacy and advance longstanding policy priorities....more

Shorts On Long Term Care March 2017 - News for the NC LTC Community

Thursdays with Mama - Life has a rhythm, a symmetry, a meter, a metric. It’s rarely smooth or perfect. It’s knots and knuckles, bumps and bruises. It’s rough and tumble. It sings its own song in its own...more

What’s in Your Local Transportation Policy?

Those in the business of providing healthcare services to Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries are all too familiar with the federal Anti-kickback Statute (AKS). Among other dreadful sanctions, it imposes criminal penalties on...more

CMS Issues Instructions to Hospitals Regarding the Implementation of Ruling 1498-R2

In April 2015, CMS issued Ruling 1498-R2 addressing the calculation of the Medicare fraction of the disproportionate share hospital (DSH) adjustment for patient discharges prior to October 1, 2004. CMS has now issued...more

Recent Changes to Medicare “Incident To” Billing Rules

Medicare permits a physician to bill for certain services furnished by a nurse practitioner or other auxiliary personnel under what is referred to as the "incident to" billing rules. The "incident to" rules permit services...more

Medicare Mandatory Bundled Payments Rule: Minor Aspects Delayed, Others On-Schedule for July Implementation

In a move the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services cites as a reaction to President Donald Trump's regulatory freeze, CMS announced that implementation of certain minor aspects of the final rule expanding Medicare...more

Entitlement Reform – Medicare

Medicare, like Medicaid, has long been a reform target of congressional Republicans who seek to bend the cost curve for the program that provides coverage for more than 50 million seniors at a cost of more than $500 billion...more

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