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CMS nominee Verma grilled on fraud, fee-for-service at confirmation hearing

CMS nominee Verma grilled on fraud, fee-for-service at confirmation hearing

Seema Verma, President Donald Trump's nominee to lead the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, told lawmakers on Thursday that she'd make targeting healthcare fraud and abuse a "top priority" should she get the job.

Verdict reached in False Claims Act whistleblower suit against Consulate Health Care

A Florida jury sided with a nursing home whistleblower this week regarding allegations over whether her former employer submitted false claims to the Medicare and Medicaid programs.

Provisions of cardiac care, hip fracture bundles delayed by CMS

The effective date for some provisions of two recently announced bundled payment programs will be pushed back to allow the new administration time to review them, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

Also in the News for Friday, Feb. 17

Healthcare spending expected to be 20% of GDP by 2025 ... Former SNF aide faces up to 4 years in prison for $3,500 theft from resident ... Man arrested after breaking into SNF resident's room, taking clothes off

Federal appeals court won't judge statistical sampling use in SNF case

Federal appeals court won't judge statistical sampling use in SNF case

An appeals court this week declined to rule on the use of statistical sampling in False Claims Act cases, leading debate over the controversial fraud investigation method to continue.

Report: Average annual cost of skilled nursing care breaks $100,000 for first time

The average national cost for both private and semi-private skilled nursing facility rooms has jumped again, with the average price of a private room reaching $102,900, according to a new report.

Republicans eyeing Medicaid overhaul as part of ACA repeal bill

Major reforms to the Medicaid program are on the table this week as Republican lawmakers craft a reconciliation bill that would repeal the Affordable Care Act.

Also in the News for Thursday, Feb. 16

CMS nominee Verma may face conflict of interest over work in Indiana ... Direct Supply, Prime Care Technologies head to court over trade secret allegations ... Remote monitoring system for SNF residents with heart failure cut readmissions 24%

SNF will have to hand over internal reports in negligence case, court rules

SNF will have to hand over internal reports in negligence case, court rules

An Illinois skilled nursing facility will have to produce internal documents in a negligence lawsuit filed by the family of a resident, an appeals court ruled last week.

Court paves way for fight over inpatient stays, SNF coverage

Court paves way for fight over inpatient stays, SNF coverage

Debate over Medicare beneficiaries' hospital stays being classified as inpatient — a designation crucial to receive skilled nursing coverage — will continue, thanks to a court's order last week.

Trump's pick for budget director plans crackdown on federal regulations

Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-SC), President Donald Trump's pick to lead the Office of Management and Budget, has vowed to take "a hard look" at federal regulations if he's confirmed, according to published reports.

Also in the News for Wednesday, Feb. 15

CMS releases manual updated with new requirements of participation ... Quality improvement tracking most common barrier to reducing readmissions ... Telehealth program shown to halve hospital admissions

Demo projects need new safeguards, improvements, healthcare group says

Demo projects need new safeguards, improvements, healthcare group says

A coalition of healthcare groups is pushing lawmakers and the new head of the Department of Health and Human Services to consider strengthening the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation as they debate changes to federal health programs.

Bribery charges added to case against SNF owner accused of leading $1 billion fraud ring

An embattled SNF owner who has been accused of leading a $1 billion Medicare fraud ring also allegedly bribed a state regulator to find out when surveyors would be visiting his facilities, according to the Miami Herald.

Medical marijuana company looking to nursing homes as potential customers

A New York company that grows and sells medical marijuana is attempting to tap into the skilled nursing industry to find new customers.

Also in the News for Tuesday, Feb. 14

ACO participation cut post-acute spending by 9% ... Alternative payment model could boost palliative care, researchers say ... More seniors taking multiple 'brain-affecting' drugs, raising risk of falls

Price confirmed for HHS; Verma's CMS interview set for Thursday

Price confirmed for HHS; Verma's CMS interview set for Thursday

Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) was confirmed by a 52-47 vote as the new secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services Friday.

Bundled payment programs curbed unnecessary care, costs, over 4-year period, report asserts

Value-based care models, including bundled payments for hip and knee replacements, reduce costs and unnecessary care, according to a new analysis.

Researchers declare Parkinson's patients given too many antipsychotics

Canadian physicians are over-prescribing antipsychotics to Parkinson's disease patients in long-term care facilities, a new study finds.

Also in the News for Monday, Feb 13

Nurse aide to serve year in prison for beating resident ... Florida LeadingAge CEO says a new Medicaid plan would "reverse 30 years of progress" ... Footprints in snow lead police to New Hampshire nursing home robber