House proposes health package with bills to raise CMPs, repeal IPAB

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Legislation that would increase the civil monetary penalties for healthcare fraud and abuse is among 10 bills included in a new health package scheduled to be marked up by the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Wednesday.

Included in the package is H.R. 3245, which would update civil and criminal penalties in the Medicare program, many of which “were last updated 20 years ago,” according to a House memo. The bill, which has already passed the committee's Health Subcommittee on a voice vote, would double most CMPs.

Also rolled into the package is H.R. 849, which calls for the repeal of the Independent Payment Advisory Board, which was created under the Affordable Care Act to control in Medicare costs. Previous attempts at repealing the board, which currently has no members, have failed, despite pushback from healthcare organizations.

Bills to expand telemedicine use for stroke patients (H.R. 1148) and ease up on electronic health record meaningful use standards are also slated for markup.

The package also includes a bill to extend funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program, and an additional $1 billion in Medicaid funds for Hurricane Maria-hit Puerto Rico.