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- HHS: NPDB requirements still apply in states with DA&O laws
Physicians in states with disclose, apology and offer (DA&O) laws must still have payouts made on their behalf reported to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB). The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued the ruling in May, but few knew about it until mid-August when watchdog group Public Citizen followed up on the department's efforts to close alleged loopholes making DA&O-related payments nonreportable.
- 2015 IPPS Final Rule released
A significant portion of updates in the Fiscal Year 2015 IPPS final rule pertain to the Hospital Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) Program, the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program, and the Hospital-Acquired Condition (HAC) Reduction Program.
- AOA votes for single accreditation system
American Osteopathic Association (AOA) delegates voted last week to support a decision by the AOA Board of Trustees to pursue a new, single accreditation system for graduate medical education. The vote clears the way for medical schools, hospitals, and community health centers to develop a single standard for residency program training. Graduating students from DO or MD schools can now become board-eligible, practicing physicians in the United States through a single accrediting system.
- Single accreditation system for GME gets the go-ahead
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), and the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM) have agreed to a single accreditation system for graduate medical education (GME) programs in the U.S. The single accreditation system will allow graduates of allopathic and osteopathic medical schools to complete their residency and/or fellowship education in ACGME-accredited programs and demonstrate achievement of common Milestones and competencies.
- Draft NPDB Guidebook open for public comment
The National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB) is revising the NPDB Guidebook to incorporate legislative and regulatory changes adopted since its last edition, including the merger of the NPDB with the Healthcare Integrity and Protection Data Bank. The revised Guidebook will offer more and clearer examples of when and how to report and query, more useful tables explaining Data Bank policies, and live links to statutes, regulations, and the NPDB website.
- News: Department of Justice and Office of the Inspector General announce 'record-breaking' returns
The Department of Justice (DOJ) recovered $5.69 billion in False Claims Act settlements in fiscal year (FY) 2014; $2.3 billion of which against federal healthcare programs, according to a press release. In its semiannual report to Congress, the Office of Inspector General estimates its FY 2014 recoveries at $4.9 billion—with 80% of its work focused on Medicare and Medicaid related concerns. The report, released December 10, also states that OIG excluded 4,017 individuals and entities from federal health care programs in FY 2014 and reported 971 criminal actions.
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