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Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)

Latest Headlines

Latest Headlines

New HHS program targets Medicare fraud

HHS has launched a new pilot program hoping to catch dishonest medical equipment suppliers in the Los Angeles area and South Florida. If the pilot is successful, CMS plans to role out the program across the United States. The two-year effort, designed to ferret out Medicare fraud, will search for falsified bills and overcharges from suppliers of prosthetics, orthotics, diabetic supplies …

Officials make case for Los Angeles hospital closure

California regulators laid out their case this week for closing Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital, arguing it continues to provide substandard care and is putting patients at risk. In a 32-page report, the California Department of Health Services cited findings from inspections between October 2004 and June 2007, that suggest the hospital hasn't made sure nurses are competent or …

ALSO NOTED: States work to offset Medicaid drug cuts; Biotechnology generics bill progressing; and much more...

> States are hoping to offset the effects of a proposed CMS rule that would cut Medicaid reimbursements to pharmacies for generic drugs. Article > A Senate committee has approved pending legislation that would help the FDA approve generic versions of biotechnology drugs. Article > Charlotte, North …

St. Barnabas racketeering suit dismissed

Despite its having engaged in a massive Medicare scam costing the federal government at least $630 million, St. Barnabas Health Care System did not prevent other hospitals from getting fair reimbursement. That's the conclusion of a federal judge, who ruled that despite the fraud, St. Barnabas had not engaged in racketeering. Two small hospitals in Maine and Colorado filed the suit, alleging St. Barnabas' over billing was so extreme it distorted CMS's Medicare reimbursement …

UConn Health Center settles Medicare charges

The University of Connecticut Health Center will pay more than $475,000 to settle Medicare over-billing charges. The hospital was accused of overcharging Medicare for cancer treatments, including chemotherapy and infusion therapy, from 2002 to 2004. The feds had charged that instead of billing Medicare on a per-patient basis, the Center's John Dempsey Hospital charged Medicare for the hours it spent in patient care, resulting in bills that were two- to seven-times larger than allowed. The …

CMS faces ED overcrowding scrutiny

The issue of emergency department preparedness is not a new one, and CMS is getting heat from Congress for not taking action on the problem. In recent years, lower ED capacity and higher patient demand has placed strain on the system even under the best of circumstance, and officials fear EDs are woefully unprepared to handle …

King-Harbor state license may be pulled

After surviving years of scandals over questionable care, Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital may be out of time. California regulators have set plans to revoke the hospital's license, something they haven't done to any hospital in the state since 2004. The hospital can appeal the decision, a process which could take as long as a year, but at least some of the county supervisors aren't sure they should fight. Two of the five members of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors say …

ALSO NOTED: Senate questions hospital Medicare cuts; Public favors health reform; and much more...

> Senate Finance Committee leaders told CMS this week that they are concerned about the impact of proposed reductions in Medicare reimbursement for hospitals during 2008 and 2009. Article > A Kaiser Family Foundation poll has found that healthcare is top domestic issue the public wants presidential candidates to address. Executive summary …

King-Harbor restructuring in jeopardy

When Harbor-UCLA Medical Center took over operations of troubled Los Angeles hospital King-Drew, the idea was that Harbor would purge much of the facility's staff and upgrade their skills. However, it appears this isn't happening, despite the fact that the hospital promised these changes to CMS after it threatened to pull its accreditation. Yesterday, county health officials told the Board of Supervisors that they had only reassigned one-third of the hospital's 1,200 employees. For …

Senator questions CMS on King-Harbor

High-profile troubles at Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital are bringing the wrath of Congress down on CMS. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) has written a letter to CMS Acting Administrator Leslie Norwalk demanding to know how CMS will make sure that the hospital meets Medicare standards in the future. The facility, formerly known as King-Drew, has faced scrutiny over alleged care lapses for some time now. In its prior incarnation as King-Drew, the hospital had lost …