Anthem On the Hook for $16M to U.S., $115M to Consumers

As a result of a single data breach of protected health information (PHI), albeit one affecting 79 million consumers, Anthem Inc. is now being fined $16 million by the government and owes an additional $115 million to those affected, who won a class action lawsuit that was approved by a judge this past August. The […]

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HHS Sued Over Delay in Drug Discount Rule

Congress in 2010 passed legislation requiring transparency in drug pricing for a hospital program known as 340B, and the Obama administration issued a final rule (finally) in January 2017. Now, the Trump administration is delaying implementation at the cost of a lawsuit against the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The American Hospital Association […]

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HHS Awards $125 Million to Community Health Centers

Today, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced $125 million in Quality Improvement grant awards to 1,352 community health centers across all U.S. states, territories and the District of Columbia. Funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), health centers will use these funds to continue to improve quality, efficiency, and the […]

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Short-Term Health Plans to Be Offered Beginning in October

The departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor (DOL) and the Treasury (DOT) today issued a final rule allowing for the sale and renewal of short-term, limited-duration health plans that cover longer periods than the previous maximum period of less than three months. Such coverage can now cover an initial period of less than […]

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OMB to Disclose Plans for Restructuring of HHS, USDA

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is expected to unveil plans this month to move several welfare-related functions from the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Specifically, the restructuring would relocate the $70 billion food stamp program from Agriculture to HHS, and it would also […]

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HHS Creates DRIVe Initiative to End Infectious Disease Threats

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has opened a new office known as the Division for Research, Innovation and Ventures (DRIVe), which has been tasked with creating public-private partnerships to detect and battle infectious diseases before they become epidemics. “It takes too long to recognize when a disease, virus or biological threat has […]

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HHS Seeks to Modify Disclosure Rule, Establish Means to Share HIPAA Fines with Victims

Following comments made in March by Roger Severino, director of the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently published two Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRMs), seeking comments on revising the disclosure rule covering protected health information (PHI) and on sharing HIPAA Privacy Rule violation fines with victims of […]

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HHS Releases Funding to Fight Opioid Crisis

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) just released the second year of funding to 50 states, four U.S. territories, and the free associated states of Palau and Micronesia, totaling $485 million to continue the nation’s efforts to combat the opioid crisis. “The Trump administration is partnering with states and territories to accelerate the […]

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States Move to Fill in the Voids in Trumpcare

The Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka Obamacare) is still the law of the land, but the Trump administration has modified so many of its provisions — including the elimination of a tax penalty for not having health insurance — that the remaining parts of the ACA are forcing some states, and even citizen initiatives, to […]

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HHS, DOJ Turn Up the HEAT* on Health Care Fraud, Recover $2.6 Billion

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Attorney General Jeff Sessions today released a fiscal year (FY) 2017 Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control Program report showing that for every dollar the federal government spent on healthcare related fraud and abuse investigations in the last three years, the government recovered $4. Additionally, the report […]

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