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Sens. Warren, Grassley Push CMS To Require UDIs In Medicare Claims

Ahead of FDA's rollout of the Global Unique Identifier Database (GUDID), Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) sent a letter urging CMS to consider requiring that Medicare claims include Unique Device Identifier information.

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The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) plans to recommend a budget-neutral per-beneficiary per-month payment to primary care physicians, instead of continuing the expiring primary care pay bump, and commissioners plan to reiterate their call for repealing the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR), which would cut doctors pay by 24 percent if it isn't patched or repealed by the end of March.

Congressional Medicare advisers said Thursday (Dec. 18) they plan to offer the same recommendations on hospital payments as last year, which includes overall pay increases and some cuts in certain areas.

Lawmakers in their report accompanying the recently passed fiscal 2015 spending bill blast CMS' Recovery Audit contractor program for harming providers and contributing to the backlog at the third level of Medicare appeals.

With oral arguments in the King v. Burwell lawsuit now set for early March, some policymakers and advisers are still fiercely debating whether the U.S. Supreme Court could rule that the federally facilitated marketplace's premium tax credits are retroactively illegal and require subsidy recipients to reimburse the cost of those credits

The administration Monday (Dec. 22) proposed changes to a final rule in a bid to make insurance plans' Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) more streamlined and user friendly, including adding another scenario to help illustrate the cost of certain services and reducing the length of the SBC from four double-sided pages to two-and-a-half.

FDA said Tuesday (Dec. 22) that it will be changing its indefinite deferral policy on blood donations from men who have sex with men to allow them to make blood donations one year after their last sexual encounter with another man.

The Center for Medicare Advocacy, along with Vermont Legal Aid, sued HHS Friday (Dec. 19) over alleged Medicare denials of home health services for beneficiaries who appeals judges have previously recognized as homebound, but Medicare contractors say are not.

Congressional Medicare advisers worried health plans on Friday (Dec. 19) with talk of pay cuts by way of “increasing coding intensity adjustment.”