Earlier this month the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s subcommittee on Government Oversight and Investigations held its second hearing on the 340B Drug Discount Program. The hearing followed on the heels of a July 18th hearing in which officials from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the Government Accountability Office (GAO), and the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) testified about the challenges faced in overseeing the 340B Program.

This hearing was called Examining How Covered Entities Utilize the 340B Drug Pricing Program.  Representatives of five different covered entities were asked to address three questions in their testimony:

  • How much do 340B Covered Entities save when purchasing 340B drugs?
  • How are those savings tracked?
  • How are those savings used?

However, it was the follow-up questions from subcommittee and committee members that may indicate where Congress is headed in legislating changes to the 340B Program. Continue Reading Six Key Follow-Up Questions Asked by Congress in 340B Hearing

Written by Carrie Roll

Last Thursday, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health held a hearing, “Telehealth to Digital Medicine: How 21st Century Technology Can Benefit Patients,” to explore how technology can be harnessed to advance the U.S health care system and improve patient care.  The purpose of the hearing was to (1) begin a discussion on the types of technologies that hold promise for the future of the health care system, (2) explore the positive and negative implications of adopting such technologies, and (3) identify targeted ways that such technologies could help transform the quality and improve the delivery of health care in the U.S. Continue Reading Health Subcommittee Seeks Ideas on How Technology Can Improve Patient Care

Written By: Kimberly Gold

The HHS Office of Civil Rights (OCR) announced that the Health Information Technology (HIT) Policy Committee’s Privacy and Security Tiger Team will hold a virtual, public hearing on Monday, September 30 from 11:45 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EDT to discuss approaches for providing patients with greater transparency about the uses and disclosures of their electronic protected health information (PHI).  The hearing is also intended to address the HIPAA Privacy Rule “accounting of disclosures” requirement.

Continue Reading Hearing to Address HIPAA Accounting of Disclosures

Written by: Stephanie D. Willis

Nearly one in three cell phone owners have used their phone to look for health information. Approximately 19% of smartphone owners have downloaded a mobile medical application (Medical App).  These and many more statistics prompted the House Committee on Small Business’s Subcommittee on Health and Technology (Subcommittee) to hold a Mobile Medical App Entrepreneurs: Changing the Face of Health Care hearing on June 27, 2013. Continue Reading House Subcommittee Hears Testimony on Developing Mobile Medical Applications

Written by: Stephanie Willis and John Custer, ML Strategies Intern

hearing titled Anatomy of a Fraud Bust: From Investigation to Conviction held by the Senate Committee on Finance (Committee) on April 24th allowed federal health care agencies to both tout their fraud-fighting successes, and defend their failure to implement all of the fraud-fighting initiatives created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  As a starting point, the government witnesses called to testify discussed two fraud enforcement success stories: the September 7, 2011 nationwide roundup of 91 individuals accused of health care fraud offenses in 8 cities involving approximately $295 million in false billing to federal health care programs and the ABC Home Health and Florida Home Health (ABC/Florida) case from the Southern District of Florida.  Afterwards, the government witnesses fielded questions from the Committee members about the government’s plans going forward in the health care fraud prevention and enforcement arenas.   The hearing coincided with the Government Accountability Office’s release of a report on implementation by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) of  provider screening efforts to prevent ineligible providers from fraudulently accessing Medicare and Medicaid payments.  Continue Reading Senate Committee Holds Hearing on Health Care Fraud Enforcement