On January 20, 2012, the Obama Administration posted its Fall 2011 Regulatory Agenda, outlining its planned regulatory initiatives in a number of policy areas. Priorities for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) include, among many others:

  • Implementing Affordable Care Act (ACA) insurance reforms, including establishing Affordable Insurance Exchanges, establishing risk adjustment criteria for health plans, and expanding Medicaid coverage;
  • Improving health care quality and patient safety, including implementing value-based purchasing programs for hospitals and other health care providers and promoting health information technology adoption and electronic health records;
  • Improving response to adverse events, including establish a unique identification system to track medical devices
  • Advancing scientific research by revising ethical rules governing research on human subjects; and
  • Streamlining regulations to reduce regulatory burdens, including Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules designed to reduce reporting and data submission requirements for drug and medical device manufacturers, and streamlined Medicare conditions of participation for hospitals and other providers.

A listing of specific HHS rules under consideration (including a variety of Medicare payment update rules) also is available.