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Showing 4 posts in U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

OCR Provides Guidance on Direct Liability for Business Associates Under HIPAA

A HIPAA Business Associate ("Business Associate") is an individual or entity who performs or furnishes activity or service for or on behalf of a HIPAA Covered Entity ("Covered Entity") involving the use or disclosure of protected health information ("PHI"). The HITECH Act and OCR's HIPAA Security final rule provides the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Office for Civil Rights ("OCR") with authority to take enforcement action against Business Associates only for those requirements and prohibitions of the HIPAA Rules outlined below.

Based on recent guidance provide by OCR, Business Associates should implement a HIPAA compliance program and document compliance with the HIPAA Privacy and Security rules in order to minimize potential HIPAA enforcement actions. Covered Entities should also perform due diligence on potential Business Associates and monitor and audit Business Associate compliance. More ›

Health Care Organizations Should Take Heed of New HHS Cybersecurity Guidance

Cybersecurity is a significant and growing compliance risk for health care organizations. If your organization fails to protect patients from cybersecurity risks, the result could be serious fines and penalties for non-compliance with federal and state cybersecurity and data breach laws. The good news is that the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services ("HHS") recently released voluntary cybersecurity guidance for health care organizations. More ›

OIG Issues Advisory Opinion Allowing a Federally Qualified Health Center to Routinely Waive Co-Payments and/or Deductibles for Medicare and TRICARE Patients

On January 14, 2019, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General (the "OIG") issued Advisory Opinion 19-01, which was favorable to a federally qualified health center's ("FQHC's") proposal to routinely waive co-payments and/or deductibles for Medicare and TRICARE patients (the "Proposed Arrangement"). The particular FQHC that made the request is a pediatric clinic that provides medical, psychiatric, and dental care to children who reside in an area that contains disproportionately large numbers of children living in poverty. More ›

More than 600 Healthcare Professionals Hit by DOJ with Medicare Fraud Charges

The number of criminal charges filed annually by the Department of Justice (DOJ) against health care providers and professionals continues to escalate. On June 28, 2018, the DOJ announced that the Medicare Fraud Strike Force had charged 601 individuals across the United States, including more than 150 physicians, nurses, and other licensed medical professionals for participating in health care fraud schemes involving more than $2 billion in false billings this summer. At the same time, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services initiated suspension actions against numerous providers, including doctors, nurses, and pharmacists. More ›

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