The Reed Smith Health Industry Washington Watch blog has been updated to report on recent health policy developments, including the following:

  • Regulatory Developments. CMS has expanded its moratoria on the enrollment of home health agencies and ambulance suppliers in designated areas, and it is inviting applications under the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Initiative and the Frontier Community Health Integration Demonstration. HHS has published a final rule to amend HIPAA and CLIA regulations expand direct access to lab test reports. The IRS has released ACA “shared responsibility” guidance that delays compliance deadlines for certain employers.
  • Other CMS Developments. CMS is requesting comments on episode-based payment models for outpatient specialty practitioner services. CMS has made announcements regarding implementation of the “2 midnight” inpatient admissions criteria, “Sunshine Act” Open Payments Program registration and data submission, and Qualified Health Plan issuer requirements.
  • Legislative Developments. Congress has approved legislation that extends Medicare sequestration.  In addition, a major bipartisan, bicameral Medicare physician fee schedule reform bill has been released, and a House hearing examined drug shortages.
  • Fraud & Abuse Developments. The OIG has released its FY 2014 Work Plan and a report on the 340B discount drug program, and there have been recent developments involving physician-owned distributors. A GAO report urges CMS to finalize pending Medicaid drug pricing reforms. The DOJ has announced updated health care fraud recovery statistics.
  • Health Industry Events. Upcoming CMS events will focus on the future of the Physician Compare website, hospital outpatient services, and the National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes. The FTC is holding a workshop on health care competition.