Tag Archives: Physician-Owned Distributors (PODs)

MedPAC Issues Annual Report to Congress on Medicare and the Health Delivery System

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) has released its annual report to Congress on “Medicare and the Health Care Delivery System.” This year’s report includes recommendations for changes to emergency department services policies, along with analyses of potential changes that would impact physicians, medical equipment suppliers, post-acute care providers, and others.  Highlights include the following:  … Continue Reading

Update on Physician-Owned Distributor (POD) Developments

For some time, we have been reporting on issues involving federal government scrutiny of physician-owned distributors (“PODs”). From the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General’s (“OIG”) issuance of the March 2013 OIG Special Fraud Alert (“Special Fraud Alert”), to the Reliance Medical Systems challenge to the Fraud Alert, to the subsequent failure … Continue Reading

Upcoming Health Policy Hearings

Several Congressional hearings are scheduled next week and into December on health policy issues, including: A November 17 Senate Finance Committee hearing entitled “Physician Owned Distributors: Are They Harmful to Patients and Payers?” A November 17 House Judiciary Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform hearing on “The State of Competition in the Pharmacy Benefit Manager and Pharmacy … Continue Reading

OIG Reviews Overlap Between Physician-Owned Hospitals and Physician-Owned Distributors (PODs) of Spinal Devices

 The Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services has issued a report on “Overlap Between Physician-Owned Hospitals and Physician-Owned Distributors.”  The OIG reviewed 12 hospitals that self-identified as physician-owned and previously reported having purchased spinal devices from PODs.  The OIG attempted to determine whether physicians had an ownership interest … Continue Reading

OIG Highlights Volume of Spinal Surgeries Tied to Physician-Owned Distributors (PODs)

A recent OIG report links the growing presence of physician-owned distributorships, or PODs, to increased spinal surgery volumes and potentially increased Medicare costs. The OIG notes a “substantial presence” of PODs in the spinal device market, with PODs supplying spinal devices for 19% of the spinal fusion surgeries billed to Medicare in FY 2011. According … Continue Reading

Device Manufacturer Files Challenge to OIG Special Fraud Alert on Physician-Owned Distributors

As reported on our sister blog, http://www.lifescienceslegalupdate.com/, Reliance Medical Systems, LLC, filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California this week that seeks a declaration that an Office of Inspector General (OIG) Special Fraud Alert on physician-owned distributors (PODs) unfairly and unconstitutionally burdens First Amendment rights of free speech … Continue Reading

OIG Special Fraud Alert Deems Physician-Owned Distributors (PODs) As “Inherently Suspect” Under Anti-Kickback Statute

On March 26, 2013, the HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) released a Special Fraud Alert highlighting the risks associated with PODs — physician-owned entities that sell (or arrange for the sale of) implantable medical devices ordered by their physician-owners for use in procedures the physician-owners perform on their own patients at hospitals or ambulatory … Continue Reading

Lawmakers Seek Investigation of Physician Owned Distributors (PODs) for Medical Devices

A bipartisan group of lawmakers have requested that the OIG and CMS investigate “physician owned distributors” (PODs), described as arrangements under which a physician investor purchases ownership shares in an entity that then purchases or serves as a medical device distributor for the products the physician uses in surgery (primarily orthopedic implants). According to a Senate … Continue Reading
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