New Health IT Policy Committee member appointed; Epic settles employee overtime lawsuit;

News From Around the Web

> The deadline for submitting comments to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT regarding the 2014 Edition Release 2 Test Procedures is fast approaching. The criteria the agency is seeking comment on include computerized physician order entry, transition of care and clinical information reconciliation and incorporation. The last day to submit comments is Nov. 7. Website

> U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell has appointed a new member to the Health IT Policy Committee. Anjum Khurshid, from the Louisiana Public Health Institute, will serve as the Committee's public health representative. Floyd Eisenberg, Leslie Kelly Hall and Arien Malec also were reappointed to the Health IT Standards Committee. Announcement

> Electronic health record giant Epic has agreed to pay $5.4 million to settle a class action wage and hour suit brought by former employees who alleged that they were not paid overtime that they were entitled to, according to the Wisconsin State Journal. Epic had claimed that the employees, who performed quality assurance, were exempt from overtime because they were computer or administrative employees. Any settlement funds not paid out will be donated to Access Community Health Centers, which provide treatment to low income patients. Article

Health Finance News

> Hospitals continue to push back against the 0.2 percent Inpatient Prospective Payment System cut imposed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services during the 2014 fiscal year. Four state hospital associations and four hospital systems sued CMS earlier this year over the proposed cut, which stems from projections that there would be an uptick of inpatient admissions over the two-midnight rule. The rule, intended to cut down on short-stay inpatient admissions, has been a sore point in the hospital community. Article

> Hospitals are in an uproar over Genetech's plan to greatly increase the prices it charges for cancer drugs. Genentech informed hospitals in September that they will no longer be able to purchase Avastin, Herceptin and Rituxan through specialty distributors as opposed to the wholesalers they normally used. Genentech reaped about $13.6 billion in total sales among those drugs last year. Article

Health Insurance News

> Medicare Part D overpaid for HIV drugs claimed on behalf of 158 deceased beneficiaries in 2012, an Office of Inspector General study found. Most of these drugs were dispensed by retail pharmacies. Part D sponsors submit prescription drug event records to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for each drug dispensed to enrolled beneficiaries. Article

> Aetna will provide benefits for gender reassignment surgery next year for federal employees in its customer base. While health insurance benefits have not historically been available for this surgery, Aetna's announcement is one of several signs that what's been considered transgender discrimination in health insurance is making a gradual exit. Article

And Finally... That explains its poor football record! Article

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