Office of the Inspector General

News & Analysis as of

OCR to Investigate More HIPAA Breaches Affecting Fewer Than 500 Individuals

On August 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”), Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) announced plans to expand its investigations of reported breaches of the Health Insurance Portability and...more

OIG Highlights Varying Local Medicare Part B Drug Coverage Policies; Recommends Single Entity to Make Drug Coverage Determinations

The OIG has issued a report entitled “MACs Continue to Use Different Methods to Determine Drug Coverage,” which reviews how Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) make Medicare Part B drug coverage determinations and...more

OIG Cautions that States May Be Claiming Matching Funds for Privately-Operated Hospitals

The OIG has issued a memo to CMS suggesting that some states may be claiming matching funds for government-owned but privately-operated hospitals, where no state or local government funds are used to operate the hospital....more

OIG Examines Adverse Events in Rehab Hospitals

According to a recent HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) report, about 29% of Medicare beneficiaries experienced adverse or temporary harm events during their rehabilitation hospital stay, based on sample of 417...more

Manatt on Health Reform: Weekly Highlights - August 2016 #3

CMS’s risk adjustment program data signals an improving risk pool while the agency announces plans to modify the program; California enrolls 134,000 undocumented immigrant children into Medicaid; and Oregon approves increases...more

CMS Re-proposes Ban on Per-Click Fees for Space and Equipment Leases under Stark

In the CY 2017 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (CY 2017 MPFS), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued proposed updates to the physician self-referral law (Stark law). The primary Stark law update focused on...more

OIG Approves Hospice Payments to Nursing Facility for Dual Eligible Patients Under Medicaid Demonstration Project

On July 20, 2016, the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a favorable Advisory Opinion (16-08) [PDF] regarding payments from a hospice to a nursing facility in which a dual...more

Congressional Report Finds FDIC Data Breach Response Obstructed Congressional Oversight

On July 12, the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology (the “Science Committee”) released a report regarding its investigation of an October 2015 data breach and the subsequent response of...more

Mid-Year 340B Program Update

Since our last 340B Drug Pricing Program (340B Program) update, the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued two regulations, the final Medicaid managed care regulation and a proposed update to the...more

OIG Gives Green Light to Hospice Provider’s Payment to Nursing Facilities

Last week, the OIG issued a favorable opinion to a hospice provider seeking to make supplemental payments to skilled nursing facilities. Under the proposed arrangement, the hospice provider would make a supplemental payment...more

Unplanned EHR Disruptions–Common for Hospitals

The prevalence of ransomware attacks is increasing. In fact, “[o]n average, more than 4,000 ransomware attacks have occurred daily since January 1, 2016,” according to a recent interagency government report. Given this...more

New Medicare Enrollment Requirements for MA Providers

In Depth - The Medicare Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule released by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on July 7, 2016, (the Proposed Rule) requires certain providers and suppliers furnishing health...more

Obama Administration, Congress Take Steps to Fight Opioid Epidemic

HHS has announced a series of actions to address the nation’s opioid epidemic, as Congress has cleared the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act for the President’s signature. As part of the HHS activities, the Substance...more

OIG Permits Copayment Coupon Arrangement for Statutorily Non-Covered Drug in Advisory Opinion 16-07

On June 20, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a favorable Advisory Opinion 16-07 regarding a savings card program (Card Program) under which Medicare Part D...more

Use of Modifier 25 - 2017 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of Inspector General (OIG) have reviewed the use of Modifier 25 to unbundle payments for evaluation and management (E/M) services when a procedure is...more

CMS Proposed Rule Implements Limitations on Medicare Payments for Off-Campus Outpatient Hospital Departments

In Depth - Background - On July 6, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the CY 2017 Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) Proposed Rule, which includes proposed regulations to...more

OIG, CMS Focus New Scrutiny on Home Health Industry: Additional Investigative and Enforcement Activity Likely to Follow

On June 22, 2016, the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) issued a comprehensive report detailing its nationwide analysis of common characteristics in home health fraud cases. In tandem...more

OIG Advisory Opinion Approves Drug Discount Program

Last week, the OIG posted favorable advisory opinion (16-07) regarding a proposed discount program for Part D beneficiaries who are prescribed a statutorily excluded erectile dysfunction drug. The OIG concluded that while...more

OIG Delivers Home Care a One – Two Punch: Release of Report and Alert on Home Health Fraud Highlights Increased OIG Scrutiny of...

On June 22, 2016, the Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) issued two communications that underscore its continued focus on fraud in home health care, along with the role of physicians as “gate keepers” in authorizing...more

OIG Issues Report on Provider-Based Facilities, Urges CMS to Make Changes

In Depth - On June 16, 2016, the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) posted a report examining the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS’s) oversight of billing by...more

Health Update - June 2016

Real-Time Data Analytics in Government Investigations and Reducing Exposure - It is not every day that the words “innovative” and “nimble” are used when referring to an agency of the federal government bureaucracy. Yet,...more

Significant Hospital Related Mid-Year Updated OIG Review Activities

This is the second of three alerts discussing the mid-year update to the Fiscal Year 2016 Work Plan issued by the Office of Inspector General (OIG). In the first alert we discussed the top management performance challenges...more

OIG Identifies Continued Vulnerabilities in Medicare Provider-Based Facility Payment Policy

A new OIG report examines CMS’s oversight of Medicare billing by provider-based facilities – that is, facilities that operate under the ownership, administrative, and financial control of a hospital and meet other...more

OIG Recommends Eliminating Provider-Based Designation for Facilities Owned by Hospitals

In a report released on June 17, 2016, OIG renewed its call for CMS to either eliminate the provider-based designation, which allows facilities owned by and integrated with a hospital to bill Medicare as a hospital outpatient...more

Why the FDA Needs to Change Its Food Recall Policies

Add this to FDA’s growing list of things to do: improve the food recall initiation process. According to a memorandum published on June 8, 2016, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human...more

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