GAO: More Oversight Needed on 340B Contract Pharmacies; House 340B Hearing Mid-July In a new report for the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the Government Accountability Office suggests that HHS, and more specifically HRSA, should perform more oversight and more audits on 340B.. Most specifically, GAO...

340B Hospitals Denied Claims Appeals on Drug Payments In an effort to press a federal court decision to stop CMS' 340B payment cut,  hospital representatives sent a letter to the U.S. Court of Appeals detailing how two Medicare claims processors recently told hospitals that their appeals of...

Hospital Readmission Penalties Save $2 Billion,  MedPAC Suggests Expansion To All Conditions The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission released its annual June Report to Congress late last week and says the hospital readmission penalties program should be dramatically expanded.  The overall report examines a variety of Medicare...

The Cost of Health Care: a Renewed National Focus The high cost of pharmaceuticals may be the current national focus, but make no mistake, the overall high cost of health care in the United States is being targeted by the Trump Administration and Congress.  No one...

S&P: CMS' 340B Rule Could Hurt Many Hospitals; HRSA Delays Drug Company Penalties Standard and Poor says CMS cuts to 340B drugs could force smaller, rural, and high DSH covered entities to serve fewer patients and create a huge strain on emergency departments. The report states,...

House Plans To Take Up 70+ Opioid Bills Next Week While Congress is in its Memorial Day recess this week, congressional staff is putting together a package of bills to tackle the opioid crisis. The package encompasses over 70 bills that were approved by the House Energy...

Major Changes Coming to Pharmaceutical Pricing and Policy HHS Secretary Alex Azar and other Administration officials are beating the drum of pharmaceutical reform, promoting the President's "Blueprint for Lower Drug Prices" since it was introduced May 11th. Azar highlighted the need for Medicare to have the...

Updated CMS Hospital Star Ratings Shows 213 with 5 Stars CMS updated its Hospital Compare website late last month, revealing new HCAHPS summary star ratings for 3,466 hospitals, with 213 hospitals earning five stars. Since its launch in 2015, the summary star ratings program has assigned hospitals a...

340B Hospitals Have Their Day in Court, Seek Immediate Relief Hospitals faced HHS in the DC Court of Federal Appeals last Friday over the 340B outpatient rule that cut Medicare  payments for certain drugs by 28.5 percent starting January 1, 2018. HHS asserted that the Secretary has the...

Latest Hospital Patient Safety Scores Released by Leapfrog The majority of urban hospitals don't perform well on patient safety measures, according to the latest Hospital Safety Grade report released last week by the Leapfrog Group. Of the 11 hospitals in New York City included in the...