News & Analysis as of

Laboratory Payments to Physicians for Specimen Processing Present Substantial Risk of Fraud and Abuse

The United States Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) recently issued a “Special Fraud Alert” focusing on two potentially illegal trends that it has detected in arrangements between laboratories and their referring...more

CMS Extends Moratoria for the Enrollment of New Home Health Agencies and Ambulance Suppliers and Providers

Over the past year, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) flexed its regulatory muscle to establish temporary moratoria on the enrollment of certain providers and suppliers under its recent authority pursuant to...more

OIG Reports that Two MACs are Responsible for $4 Million in Overpayments for Outpatient Drugs

According to two reports issued by OIG on July 25, the Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) for Jurisdictions 13 and 14 made overpayments of approximately $2.7 million and approximately $1.3 million, respectively, for...more

OIG Determines $4.3 Million Improperly Paid to LTCHs for Interrupted Stays in 2010 and 2011

The OIG issued a report on June 3, 2014 summarizing its findings concerning the vulnerabilities and enforcement of Medicare’s interrupted-stay policy for long-term care hospitals (LTCHs). Beneficiaries in LTCHs tend to have...more

Medicaid Claims And Health Care Fraud: As The Data Flows, New Cracks Emerge

As we noted in two of our prior posts in the Insider blog, the government has long touted its ability to rely upon data mining as a means of detecting fraud in the federal health care system, and has initiated a host of...more

New OIG Special Fraud Alert Aimed at Laboratory Payments to Referring Physicians

On June 25, 2014, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a Special Fraud Alert entitled "Laboratory Payments to Referring Physicians."...more

OIG Report: Questionable Billing for Medicare Part B Clinical Laboratory Services

Perhaps not coincidentally, immediately following the release of the Questionable Laboratory Payments Special Fraud Alert by the OIG, posted yesterday on the Med Law Blog, the OIG has followed up with Audit Report OIG –...more

Medicare's Proposed Home Health Rule for 2015: CMS Suggests Only Limited Relief to the Face-to-Face Encounter Documentation...

On July 7, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services ("CMS") published proposed changes to the Medicare Home Health Prospective Payment System ("HH PPS") for calendar year 2015 ("Proposed Rule"). The Proposed Rule...more

Lab Arrangements under the Microscope: OIG Issues New Fraud Alert

Arrangements between laboratories and referring physicians/physician group practices (the “physicians”) have long been subject to scrutiny by the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (“OIG”). On...more

OIG Issues Special Fraud Alert on Lab/Physician Arrangements

The Office of the Inspector General (“OIG”) has issued another Special Fraud Alert, this time specifically targeting a recent trend in arrangements between laboratories and physicians. The alert describes two types of...more

The Intractable Problem of Medicare Fraud

You have to admire the vigilance and dedication of prosecutors and law enforcement investigators who fight Medicare fraud. There is no question that they have ramped up enforcement and promoted a strong message of deterrence....more

OIG Releases Special Fraud Alert on Laboratory Payments to Physicians

The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) for the Department of Health and Human Services recently issued a Special Fraud Alert regarding laboratory payments to referring physicians. The Special Fraud Alert reaffirms OIG’s...more

Physician Owned Distributorship Concerns Continue to Make News

On June 17, 2014, Southern California Public Radio affiliate KPCC broadcasted a report about physician-owned distributors of implantable medical devices (“PODs”) and the legal and ethical concerns that are raised when POD...more

OIG: Medicare Inappropriately Paid for 2010 E/M Services Claims - Physicians should expect higher scrutiny on Medicare claims...

Inspector General Daniel R. Levinson with the Office of the Inspector General (“OIG”) recently issued a startling report explaining that Medicare inappropriately paid $6.7 billion for claims for E/M Services in 2010. These...more

The Self-Referral Disclosure Protocol: Settlement and Enforcement Trends (Presentation)

The Self-referral Disclosure Protocol (SRDP) permits health care providers to voluntarily disclose violations of the federal physician self-referral law, also called the Stark law. Emily Wein has presented a webinar...more

Proposed Regulation Would Significantly Expand OIG’s Exclusion Authority

On May 9, 2014, the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published a proposed rule that significantly expands the OIG’s exclusion authority. 79 Fed. Reg. 26810. The...more

Brace for Medicaid data mining and recoupment demands

The federal Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) is escalating its war against Medicaid fraud and abuse, just as it has over the past years with Medicare. The OIG’s focus has turned to early prevention...more

Proposed Expansion of OIG’s Exclusion Authority

In May, the Office of Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services (OIG) proposed a new rule (Rule) that would implement changes included in the ACA. The Rule would expand OIG’s authority to exclude...more

New OIG guidance issued on independent charity patient assistance programs

On May 21, 2014, the Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) issued a Supplemental Special Advisory Bulletin (“Bulletin”) on independent charity patient assistance programs (“PAPs”). The Bulletin, which supplements the 2005...more

OIG Says Medicare Overpaid Hospitals by $19 Million for Claims Subject to the Post-Acute Care Transfer Policy

On May 28, 2014, OIG released a report asserting that over $19 million in inappropriate payments were made to hospitals for inpatient claims subject to the post-acute care transfer policy. These overpayments were the result...more

Quantifying and addressing improper payments for Medicare evaluation and management services

A review of Medicare Part B claims for evaluation and management (E/M) services conducted by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) has found that the program paid $6.7 billion in improper payments in 2010. This figure...more

OIG Issues Advisory Bulletin Impacting Independent Charity Patient Assistance Programs

On May 21, 2014, the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued its “Supplemental Special Advisory Bulletin: Independent Charity Patient Assistance Programs” (SSAB) to...more

OIG Releases Spring 2014 Semiannual Report to Congress

On May 27, 2014, OIG released its Spring 2014 Semiannual Report to Congress, covering the activities of the OIG during the first half of Fiscal Year 2014, from October 2013 through March 2014. For that time period, OIG...more

OIG Proposes Updates to Exclusion and CMP Authority

The Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently issued a pair of proposed regulations to update its exclusion and civil monetary penalty (CMP) authority. The proposed regulations...more

OIG Revamps Regulations Concerning CMPs and Exclusion

In a pair of proposed rules published in May, the HHS OIG unveiled changes to the regulations concerning OIG’s authority to impose civil monetary penalties (CMPs) and exclude individuals and entities from participation in...more

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