Office of the Inspector General

News & Analysis as of

MedPAC Issues March 2015 Report to Congress on Medicare Payment Policies

On March 13, 2015, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) issued its annual report to the Congress on Medicare payment policies (Report). The Report includes recommendations for inflation updates and payment...more

OIG adds new audit item to work plan

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) has added a new ongoing CFPB project to its work plan updated as of March 13, 2015. The OIG is auditing the CFPB’s compliance with the Improper Payments Information Act of 2002, as...more

OIG Advises that Exclusive Lab Referral Arrangement May be a Kickback

The Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) released an advisory opinion (No. 15-04) today that states a proposed arrangement to provide free laboratory tests for certain patients of...more

DOJ/OIG Issue FY2014 Report: Health Fraud Recoveries and Case Filings Decline

In an annual report required by Congress and issued today, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS-OIG) and Department of Justice (DOJ) detailed their FY 2014 results under their coordinated Health Care Fraud and...more

Patient Dumps Can be Costly (But Cheaper than Missing Signature under Stark)

Continuing an accelerating series of EMTALA investigations and settlements in 2014 and this year, a Newton, Kansas hospital has agreed to pay $45,000 to settle allegations by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the...more

OIG Reviews Medicare Reimbursement for Critical Access Hospital (CAH) Swing-Bed Services

A recent OIG report examines increasing use of CAH “swing-bed” services, which the OIG describes as being equivalent to services performed at a SNF, but which are reimbursed at 101% of a CAH’s reasonable cost rather than at...more

OIG Wants CMS to Take a Scalpel to Surgery Costs

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) of Health & Human Services is recommending that CMS make a major reduction to the amount it pays hospitals for certain kinds of surgery. ...more

OIG Repeats Calls for Expanded Medicare Part B Drug Price Substitution Policy

The OIG has issued the latest in a long line of reports comparing Medicare Part B drug average sales prices (ASP) and average manufacturer prices (AMP), this time with a focus on 2013 pricing. By way of background, CMS has...more

Attention Seniors! Check Into a Hospital and Get $100!

OIG Advisory Opinion 15-03 approves a Medigap insurer’s program that, among other things, calls for (a) network hospitals to waive the deductible for Medicare enrollees, (b) the insurer to pay the hospital network a fee each...more

OIG Announces Plans for Health Reform Oversight Activities

On February 24, 2015, the HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) released its “Health Reform Oversight Plan” for FY 2015, which describes the OIG’s current and planned efforts to oversee the implementation and management of...more

CMS Made Payments to Providers with Delinquent Medicare Debts

The OIG has issued a report on its findings that Medicare in some cases continued to make payments to physicians who have delinquent Medicare debts that have been referred to Treasury for collection. ...more

Excluded Individual Not Precluded from Payment for Pre-exclusion Services

In Advisory Opinion 15-02 [PDF], issued February 9, 2015, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) looked favorably on the Requestor’s inquiry as to whether receipt of Federal health...more

Roadmap to Prison: Lessons Learned from the Criminal Prosecution of Alpha Ambulance’s Leaders

No one running an ambulance company ever planned to go to prison for doing his or her job. But that is a real possibility if the government knocks on the door, and the owner or manager is dishonest in his or her response to...more

OIG Report Outlines Five Recommendations for Hospice Care Reform

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) to reform the hospice payment system, collect data relevant to revising hospice payments and develop quality...more

OIG criticizes HUD’s enforcement of community service requirement

This week, HUD’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a report critical of HUD’s oversight of the community service and economic self-sufficiency requirement (CSSR). This federal requirement, applicable only to public...more

OIG Advisory Opinion Sheds Light on Preventive Care Exception

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently issued an advisory opinion approving an arrangement whereby a licensed entity providing services under a state program for...more

Gear Up for Increased CMS Scrutiny of Hospice Services for Assisted Living Facility Residents - EndNotes February 2015

A recent study issued by the evaluation and policy division of the U.S. DHHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) indicates that hospices can expect increased scrutiny regarding the services they provide to assisted living...more

OIG Approves Free Diapers and Playpen in Connection with Medicaid Program Promoting Pre- and Post-Natal Care

On January 26, 2015, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued an advisory opinion approving an entity’s practice of advertising and providing free diapers and free portable...more

OIG Issues Advisory Opinion Regarding Free Items Provided By State Maternal Infant Health Program

On February 2, 2015, OIG posted a favorable Advisory Opinion regarding the provision of certain free items to Medicaid beneficiaries by a state maternal infant health program (the “Program”). The Program is designed to...more

End Notes Newsletter February 2015 - News for North Carolina’s Hospice and Palliative Care Community

In this issue: - Gear Up for Increased CMS Scrutiny of Hospice Services for Assisted Living Facility Residents - Happy New Year from the DC District Court - Companionship Exemption Lives On!! - DEA Rules On...more

Bernstein Shur’s Labor and Employment Practice Group Highlights Legal Issues to Watch in 2015

HIPAA in the Workplace - In late 2013, the Office of Inspector General issued a report critical of the Office of Civil Rights’ enforcement of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. OCR enforcement of...more

OIG Responds to Hospital Compliance Review Objections

The OIG has defended its hospital compliance review policies in response to objections raised by the American Hospital Association (AHA). Specifically, a January 15, 2015 OIG letter addresses four main areas of AHA concern...more

OIG Questions Potentially Duplicative Hospital Quality Improvement Efforts

The OIG recently issued a report that examined the extent to which Quality Improvement Organizations (QIOs) duplicate other CMS hospital quality improvement efforts, particularly Hospital Engagement Networks (HENs) and the...more

OIG Examines CMS Payments to Hospitals for Clinic Visits

The HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) estimates that CMS made $4.6 million in incorrect Medicare outpatient payments to hospitals for established patients’ clinic visits in 2012. ...more

This Just in: OIG Rules Free Diapers Are Not an Illegal Kickback

The February Profile in Courage Award goes to the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health & Human Services. In its very first Advisory Opinion of the year, the OIG has boldly proclaimed that a provider...more

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