Today the House Energy and Commerce Committee is marking up H.R. 6, the 21st Century Cures Act, a high-profile, bipartisan bill that seeks to accelerate the pace of medical cures in the United States through a variety of reforms addressing drug and device development and approval, clinical trial design, research funding, interoperability of health technology, … Continue Reading
On September 23, 2010, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published a proposed rule that would implement provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) designed to strengthen provider and supplier screening requirements under the Medicare, Medicaid, and Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). According to CMS, the Proposed Rule is intended to ensure "that only legitimate providers and suppliers are enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid, and CHIP, and that only legitimate claims will be paid."
Among many other things, the Proposed Rule would: apply screening tools, including unannounced site visits, background checks, and fingerprinting, based on the level of risk associated with different provider and supplier types; impose a $500 application fee on certain providers and suppliers; authorize temporary moratoria on enrollment of certain types of new providers and suppliers; require Medicare and Medicaid payments to be suspended upon credible allegations of fraud; and update various Medicaid screening requirements. Comments on the proposed rule will be accepted until November 16, 2010.
Our full alert provides an analysis of the proposed rule.… Continue Reading
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued new "Telemarketing FAQs" to supplement the Office of Inspector General's (OIG) recent revisions to its Special Fraud Alert on Telemarketing by Durable Medical Equipment Suppliers. As you may recall, in January 2010, the OIG amended the Special Fraud Alert to add a warning about suppliers contacting a beneficiary before the supplier receives written beneficiary consent, as it may violate the statutory provision that prohibits Durable Medical Equipment (DME) suppliers from making unsolicited telephone calls to Medicare beneficiaries regarding the furnishing of a Medicare-covered item. Specifically, the OIG stated that it "has also been made aware of instances when DME suppliers, notwithstanding the clear statutory prohibition, contact Medicare beneficiaries by telephone based solely on treating physicians' preliminary written or verbal orders prescribing DME for the beneficiaries." According to the OIG, the "physician's preliminary written or verbal order is not a substitute for the requisite written consent of a Medicare beneficiary."
In response to this new language, Reed Smith contacted the OIG to discuss the adverse impact this policy would have on timely beneficiary access to medically necessary equipment ordered by a physician, since some suppliers call a beneficiary to arrange for equipment deliveries upon receiving an initial physician verbal order. The OIG has just sent us a copy of new CMS Telemarketing FAQs that seek to clarify certain aspects of the revised Special Fraud Alert...… Continue Reading
CMS is preparing to re-launch its controversial competitive bidding program for Medicare suppliers of certain types of durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies (DMEPOS). Under competitive bidding, only suppliers who are successful bidders will be eligible to furnish certain categories of DMEPOS to Medicare beneficiaries in certain geographic areas (with very limited exception). Under competitive bidding, successful bidders will be paid based on the median of the winning suppliers' bids for each of the selected items in the region, rather than the Medicare fee schedule or supplier bid amount. This will be CMS's second attempt to institute DMEPOS competitive bidding, after the first round of bidding was blocked by Congress last year because of widespread concerns about how the program was implemented. Reed Smith's Life Sciences and Health Industry Alert, "CMS Prepares to Re-Launch Medicare DMEPOS Competitive Bidding--Tips for Potential Bidders," highlights seven steps suppliers can take now to prepare for the coming bidding period based on the lessons learned during the first round of bidding.… Continue Reading
The Reed Smith Health Industry Washington Watch blog has been updated to discuss a variety of health policy developments, including the following: FDA Transparency Task Force Toll-Free Numbers for Adverse Events Reporting Generic Drugs … Continue Reading
On July 15, 2008, the House and Senate overrode President Bush's veto of H.R. 6331, the "Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008" ("MIPPA"). MIPPA rescinds a 10.6 percent cut in Medicare physician payments, delays a controversial medical equipment competitive bidding program, and makes numerous other Medicare and Medicaid policy changes.… Continue Reading
This post was also written by Robert J. Hill and Kathleen McGuan. I. INTRODUCTION On July 15, 2008, the House and Senate overrode President Bush’s veto of H.R. 6331, the “Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008” (“MIPPA”).1 Among many other things, MIPPA delays and reforms the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (“CMS”) … Continue Reading
I. INTRODUCTION On January 8, 2008, CMS announced the second phase of Medicare competitive bidding for durable medical equipment (“DME”), prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies (“DMEPOS”). In this second round, competitive bidding will be implemented in 70 areas, including the nation’s largest cities. The complete list of areas can be found at Appendix 1. With very … Continue Reading