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Brady, Kind Push Single Value-Based Purchasing Program For All Post-Acute Sectors; AHCA Opposes Bill

House Ways & Means health subcommittee Chair Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI) introduced a bill to create a single value-based purchasing system for post-acute care that the lawmakers say would be better for providers than CMS' proposed home health value-based purchasing pilot, but the measure quickly drew opposition from the skilled nursing home lobby.

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The National Association of Medicaid Directors is urging CMS to stagger implementation of the major provisions in the proposed Medicaid managed care regulation and wants more state flexibility in several areas.

House and Senate sponsors are increasingly throwing their weight behind legislation that would continue to define small-group businesses as those with 50 or fewer employees, but allow states to expand the group to 100 if desired.

CMS released a final 2016 pay rule for nursing homes Thursday (July 30) that implements the value-based purchasing and quality reporting programs that Congress created in separate laws last year.

The IRS is looking at ways to ensure better compliance with the tax-related provisions of the Affordable Care Act, after a new Government Accountability Office report out Wednesday (July 29) told the agency to strengthen its oversight of subsidies, data matching and more.

Acting FDA Commissioner Stephen Ostroff told the agency’s Science Board that user fee negotiations cannot occur in isolation from the ongoing debate surrounding the House-passed 21st Century Cures bill and the Senate’s complimentary medical innovation effort, saying the congressional initiatives directly impinge upon user fee talks.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) are urging city and county leaders across the country to demand affordable prices for a drug used by first responders to counteract the effects of heroin and other opioid overdoses.

Former Vermont Governor Howard Dean (D) said Wednesday (July 29) the government may not need to negotiate drug prices in Medicare because insurance companies already negotiate drug prices in Part D and price controls could ruin drug research.

The Senate on Monday (July 27) passed the Notice of Observation Treatment and Implication for Care Eligibility Act, and the legislation to notify beneficiaries when they are put under observation rather than admitted to the hospital will now go to President Barack Obama's desk.