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

  • MedPAC Report to Congress on Medicare Policy. The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) has released its annual recommendations to Congress on Medicare policies, including Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) payment updates and a status report on the Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D programs.
  • Regulatory Developments. CMS has published a final rule on SMART Act Medicare Secondary Payer appeals provisions, and the FDA has issued draft guidance on the use of electronic informed consent in clinical investigations.
  • Other CMS Developments. CMS has announced a new “Next Generation” Accountable Care Organization model, and it is inviting stakeholders to join a “Health Care Payment Learning and Action Network” to promote alternative payment models. CMS also has released the April 2015 Medicare Part B drug average sales price files, a report on the impact of Medicare quality measures, and initial results for the Medicare Physician Value-based Modifier.
  • OIG & GAO Developments. The OIG has released FY 2014 State Medicaid Fraud Control Unit data, along with reports on Medicare reimbursement for critical access hospital (CAH) swing-bed services and Medicare Part B drug pricing. The GAO has addressed antipsychotic drug use in community settings and state Medicaid program integrity system effectiveness.
  • Legislative Developments. Today the House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on bills addressing DMEPOS competitive bidding, hospital observation status, Controlled Substances Act amendments, and trauma care. Congressional panels have scheduled hearings on health information technology and the Affordable Care Act.
  • Health Industry Events. Upcoming CMS events will focus on physician quality reporting programs, HCPCS coding applications, home health clinical templates, and the Medicare Shared Savings Program. The FDA is hosting a clinical outcome assessments public workshop.