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In this issue
HIPAA Series - Sweet 16 and Coming of Age - Part I of III
The three part HC Topics Series: HIPAA examines the background and recent changes to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), which was introduced in 1996, and is widely used for safeguarding the privacy of health information. Part I discusses the history of HIPAA, as excerpted from the book authored by HCC CEO Bob Cimasi, entitled, Healthcare Valuation: The Financial Appraisal of Enterprises, Assets, and Services, to be published by John Wiley & Sons later this year; Part II of the series will address the implications of the new rule affecting the definition and treatment of business associates under HIPAA; and, Part III will assess various compliance concerns and other related privacy laws.

PDF Icon SmallHIPAA Series Part I: History and Overview of HIPAA Legislation
Introduced in 1996, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is widely used for safeguarding the privacy of health information. In this first installment of a three part series, the history and background of HIPAA are discussed and the recent amendments and are introduced. Part II of the series, due next month, will address the implications of these recent changes to HIPAA. (Read more...)

PDF IconThe Sunshine Act and Health Care Transparency
The Physicians Payments Sunshine Act (Sunshine Act), part of the ACA, was finalized CMS in February 2013. The purpose of the Sunshine Act is to deter industry influence on medical treatment by requiring manufacturers of drugs, devices, biological and medical supplies covered by Medicare, Medicaid, or the Children's Health Insurance Program to report to CMS those payments or other "transfers of value" they make to physicians or teaching hospitals. However, some physicians believe the Sunshine Act may falsely condemn legitimate work they do for the industry. (Read more...)

PDF Icon Increased Fraud and Abuse Scrutiny of Hospice Reimbursement
Reimbursement for hospice services has been subject to increasing fraud and abuse scrutiny in recent years, due, in part, to reports by MedPAC regarding longer lengths of stay for residents in hospice enterprises. As a result of this increased scrutiny, many hospice companies that allegedly sought false Medicare claims have been subject to whistleblower suits, and are now facing legal and financial repercussions. (Read more...)

PDF Icon Advancements in Mobile Health Technology
The number of mobile device users who have downloaded mobile healthcare applications nearly doubled, from 127 million in 2011 to 247 million in 2012. Technological innovations are changing the face of healthcare from "brick-and-mortar" hospital transactions and face-to-face doctor-patient visits to mobile, virtual experiences around the globe. However, due in part to the rapid growth and adoption of mobile health technology, challenges exist in ensuring that research, as well as regulatory and reimbursement policies, stay abreast of this rapid growth in health information technology that is changing the landscape of healthcare delivery in the U.S. (Read more...)

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