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

  • Obama Budget Proposal. The Obama Administration has released its proposed fiscal year 2016 budget, including numerous provisions impacting Medicare, Medicaid, and other federal health programs.
  • CMS Regulatory Developments. CMS has extended its moratoria on enrollment of home health agencies and ambulance suppliers in designated areas, and the Agency has announced its intention to issue regulations to modify the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record Incentive Program meaningful use requirements.
  • Other HHS Developments. HHS has set goals for adoption of Medicare value-based purchasing and alternative payment models, and the HHS ONC is seeking comments on its draft health information technology interoperability “Roadmap.” CMS has added star ratings to Dialysis Facility Compare, and it is accepting bids for the latest round of Medicare DMEPOS competitive bidding.
  • GAO & OIG Developments. The GAO has examined geographic variation in private payer spending on high-cost procedures. OIG reports have addressed Medicare payments to hospitals for clinic visits, hospital quality improvement efforts, compounded pharmaceuticals used in hospitals, and power mobility device claims. The OIG also has responded to concerns raised about its hospital compliance review policies.
  • Legislative Developments. House panels are taking steps to speed patient access to medical innovation. The House is scheduled to vote on a bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. Congressional hearings have been focusing on health policy issues.
  • Odds & Ends. MedPAC has voiced concerns about the growing volume and burden of Medicare quality measures.
  • Health Industry Events. CMS is hosting calls on Medicare payment, quality, and coding topics; the FTC and DOJ are holding a workshop on health care competition; FDA is holding a workshop on regulation of next generation sequencing diagnostic tests; and CMS is holding a meeting on hospital outpatient payment policy.