News & Analysis as of

The Game Plan for Health Care Enforcement: Office of Inspector General Releases 2015 Work Plan

The Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) within the federal Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) is charged with protecting the integrity of HHS programs by combating fraud, abuse and waste. On Halloween of 2014,...more

The Affordable Care Act—Countdown to Compliance for Employers, Week 7: IRS Puts the Kibosh on Health Plans that Fail to Cover...

In a previous post, we described an Affordable Care Act compliance strategy—referred to commercially as a “minimum value plan” or “MVP”—that involves an offer of group health plan coverage that, while similar in most respects...more

Sometimes the Government is Here to Help: OIG Proposes More Flexibility in Rules Governing Local Transportation, Beneficiary...

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Inspector General ("OIG") just released a proposed rule (“Proposed Rule”) that provides long awaited guidance on patient transportation services, relaxes the...more

CMS Refuses to Count Family Practice Residents Who Train in Family Practice Settings

Last Friday Eastern Maine Medical Center sued Health & Human Services over the way CMS counted the number of residents in its graduate medical education program. According to the complaint, CMS refuses to count some of the...more

Department of Justice Files First False Claims Act Lawsuit Against Physician-Owned Distributorship

On Sept. 8, 2014, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a 98-page civil complaint alleging that investment returns, paid to a Michigan spinal surgeon and other physicians by a spinal implant company partially...more

Recent Trends in HIPAA Liability

Since the passage of the 2013 HIPAA Omnibus Rule, there has been a substantial increase in HIPAA enforcement actions brought by the Department of Health and Human Services, including an increase in so-called “high-impact...more

Telehealth and Health IT Policy: Considerations for Stakeholders

In recent months, as the conversation about reforming the health care system has shifted to achieving greater delivery system efficiencies, cost containment, and patient satisfaction, the role of health care...more

OIG issues special fraud alert on laboratory payments to referring physicians

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

OIG Report Recommends Increased Scrutiny of Over 1000 Laboratories With Questionable Billing for Medicare Part B Clinical...

According to a recently released report by the HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG), over 1,000 labs had unusually high billing for Medicare Part B Clinical Laboratory Services for dates of service in 2010. Increased...more

OIG Sticks It to Physician Specimen Collectors

On June 25, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of the Inspector General ("OIG") issued a Special Fraud Alert updating the previous guidelines concerning compensation by clinical laboratories to referring...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 Issues Special Fraud Alert Regarding Laboratory Payments To Referring Physicians

On June 25, 2014, the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General ("OIG"), issued a Special Fraud Alert that addressed its concerns about compensation paid by clinical laboratories...more

Healthcare Law: What Every Provider Should Know

Healthcare is an incredibly broad, diverse and dynamic industry. Because of the breadth in the field, providers are surrounded by a wide array of legal issues relating to: employment contracts, taxes, business structure,...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

Immigration Options for the Employment of International Physicians

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will do many things to alter health care delivery in the United States. One thing it will not do, however, is significantly increase the supply of physicians. The new law calls...more

Recent OIG Report Underscores Need for Home Health Agencies and Physicians to Comply With Medicare’s Face-to-Face Documentation...

Medicare overpaid the home health industry $2 billion between January 2011 and December 2012, according to a recent report by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG). The OIG’s...more

HHS releases new software for updating (but not replacing) HIPAA security risk assessment toolkits

Last week, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a new, free, downloadable tool to assist small and medium-size health care provider offices to conduct security risk assessments (SRA)....more

Health Care E-Note - March 26, 2014

In This Issue: - Hospital CEO Turnover Rate Reached Record 20 Percent in 2013 - States Take on Authority of Doctors vs. Advanced Practice Nurses - HHS Urges Hospitals to be More Prepared for Emergencies -...more

The 2014 OIG Work Plan: Select Provisions Applicable to Physician Practices

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently issued its 2014 Work Plan outlining its intended review activities of HHS Programs for 2014. This article summarizes certain...more

Halifax Settles Stark Damages for $85 Million

Halifax Hospital Medical Center and Halifax Staffing, Inc. (collectively, “Halifax”) have agreed to pay $85 million to settle allegations that Halifax compensated a group of physicians in a manner not permitted by the Stark...more

Court Dismisses POD Lawsuit Against OIG

On February 5, 2014, a federal court dismissed a challenge to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General’s (“OIG”) March 26, 2013 Special Fraud Alert (“2013 SFA”) on physician-owned...more

Final EHR Donation Rules Issued in Time for the New Year

On December 27, 2013, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued final rules revising the Stark exception (42 CFR...more

Medical practice agrees to payment due to HIPAA data breach

One day after Christmas, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Civil Rights (OCR) announced that a Massachusetts-based dermatology practice (Practice) agreed to a $150,000 payment and entered into a...more

HHS Closes Out 2013 with 6th Resolution Agreement

Throughout 2013, HHS OCR has stated that covered entities of all sizes need to give priority to securing ePHI. In addition, HHS OCR has recommended that covered entities identify and mitigate risks before an incident occurs....more

Doctors Corralled for Kickbacks

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General's (OIG) chief counsel indicated in 2007 that the government's fraud enforcement focus on large organizations was an "ineffective strategy" and that...more

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