News & Analysis as of

OIG Flags Overpayments Due to Incorrect Physician Place-of-Service Coding

According to a recent OIG report, "Incorrect Place-of-Service Coding Resulted in Potential Medicare Overpayments Costing Millions,” physicians did not always correctly code the place of service on Part B claims. This...more

21st Century Cures Legislation “Punts” on Telemedicine

On May 13, 2015, the House Energy and Commerce Committee released the latest draft of its 21st Century Cures Legislation. The proposed legislation includes certain telehealth-related provisions that, among other things,...more

Medicare Part D Data Release Continues Transparency Trend

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently added to the trend toward greater health care data transparency by releasing data about the prescription drugs that physicians and other health care providers...more

CMS Proposes FY 2016 Update to SNF PPS Rates, Policies

On April 20, 2015, CMS published its proposed rule updating Medicare skilled nursing facility (SNF) PPS rates and policies for FY 2016. CMS projects that the proposed rule would increase overall payments to SNFs by $500...more

CMS Releases Proposed FY 2016 Medicare Inpatient Psychiatric Facilities PPS Update

CMS issued a proposed rule on April 24, 2015 that would update FY 2016 Medicare payment policies and rates for the Inpatient Psychiatric Facilities (IPF) PPS. The proposed rule also would update quality measures and reporting...more

President Obama Signs SGR Repeal Legislation; New Physician Payment Methodology Begins in 2019

On April 16, 2015, President Obama signed into law the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). MACRA repeals the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) that was set to cut Medicare Physician Fee...more

Congress Repeals Sustainable Growth Rate Formula and Advances Medicare Payment for Quality

On April 14, 2015, Congress ended over a decade of repeated “doc fixes” which temporarily suspended scheduled Medicare provider reimbursement cuts, by passing the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (the “Act”). If...more

“Next-Generation ACO” Model Is CMS’s Newest Effort to Encourage More ACO Risk

On March 10, 2015, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (“CMS’s”) Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (“Innovation Center”) announced a demonstration project incorporating new risk models for reimbursement of...more

Also In The News - Health Headlines - March 2015

CMS Releases 2015 Impact Assessment of Quality Measures Report – On March 2, 2015, CMS released the 2015 National Impact Assessment of Quality Measures Report, which assesses the effectiveness and impact of quality measures...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

CMS Releases 2016 Draft Call Letter

Last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) released its 2016 Advance Rate Notice and draft Call Letter (2016 Call Letter) for the Medicare Advantage (MA) and Medicare Part D programs. The 2016 Call Letter outlines...more

CMS Releases Proposed Advance Notice and Draft Call Letter for 2016

On Friday, February 20, 2015, CMS released its Advance Notice of Methodological Changes for Calendar Year 2016 for Medicare Advantage (MA) Capitation Rates, Part C and Part D Payment Policies and 2016 Call Letter (the...more

Shorts on Long Term Care - February 2015

In this issue: - Document Retention in a Long Term Care Facility - Medicare RAC Program Improvements Delayed Until 2016 - “Bring Your Own Device” To Work Programs - NLRB Upends Legality of Employer Email...more

CMS Issues New Audit Protocols for Medicare Advantage Organizations and Part D Sponsors

On February 13, 2015, CMS announced new audit protocols and process updates for the 2015 Program Audit Cycle for Medicare Advantage (MA) organizations and Part D sponsors. According to the memorandum, 2015 begins a new...more

CMS Delays 60-Day Rule, But Overpayment Case Law Emerging

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced a one-year delay in finalizing the long-awaited and closely watched rule addressing the 60-day deadline to return Medicare and Medicaid overpayments (the...more

CMS Announces Enforcement of EHR Payment Adjustments in 2015

On December 17, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services ("CMS") announced that there would be reductions in Medicare reimbursement for health care providers who do not meet the CMS electronic health record...more

CMS Issues Final Rule on Reimbursement for Chronic Care Management Services

On November 13, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule final rule, including a new code and guidance for billing for chronic care management services (CCM),...more

CMS Updates Manual Instructions to Implement CY 2014 MPFS Changes for Reimbursement of Investigational Devices and Related...

On November 6, 2014, CMS announced changes to its Medicare Benefit Policy Manual and Medicare Claims Processing Manual related to coverage of items and services in Category A and B Investigational Device Exemption (IDE)...more

CMS Releases Final Physician Fee Schedule Rule: Key Payment and Policy Highlights

On October 31, 2014, CMS released the final Medicare physician fee schedule (PFS) rule. The new payment policies and rates set forth in the PFS final rule will go into effect on or after January 1, 2015....more

It Is Finally Here-the Sun Shines on a New Era

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) publicly launched a database this week detailing the payments doctors and teaching hospitals have received from drug and medical device manufacturers. Under the Physician...more

CMS Publishes FY 2015 Final IPPS Rule

On August 4, 2014, CMS posted its final changes and updates to the Medicare Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) that apply for fiscal year (FY) 2015, effective October 1, 2014. Below are some of the highlights of the...more

CMS Proposes Removing CME Exclusion from Sunshine Act Regulations, Citing Redundancy with Indirect Payment Exclusion

In the July 3, 2014, issue of the Federal Register, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published the proposed calendar year 2015 Medicare physician fee schedule update (the Proposed Rule). The Proposed Rule...more

CMS Designates Global Surgery as “Potentially Misvalued Services”

In the recently proposed 2015 Physician Fee Schedule, CMS devoted significant resources to discussing potentially misvalued services, which I believe is code for places where CMS would like to reduce reimbursement. One of the...more

CMS Seeking Comments Regarding Expanding Coverage for Secondary Interpretation of Images

In the proposed 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, CMS is seeking comments regarding expanding coverage for secondary interpretation of diagnostic imaging....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

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