ADEA Washington Update

HHS Releases Final Recommendations on Community Water Fluoridation

HHS | Permanent link
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released its final recommendations for community water fluoridation on April 27. To summarize The HHS recommendations reinforce that optimal community water fluoridation “continues to reduce tooth decay in children and adults…

CMS Updates “Meaningful Use” Rule in Final Stage of HITECH Act

HHS | Permanent link
The third and final rule of the HITECH Act, the six year old law designed to create a nationwide health care IT infrastructure, has been released by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The Stage 3 rule, released

Office of National Coordinator Releases “Roadmap” for Interoperability

HHS | Permanent link
A roadmap detailing the path to reach an “interoperable health IT ecosystem” by 2024 was released by the coordinator of the government’s health information technology effort.

Federal Health IT Strategic Plan Released

HHS | Permanent link
draft version of the Federal Health IT Strategic Plan 2015-2020 released last month emphasizes, among other things, that new information about health care delivery be shared “quickly, securely, and efficiently.”

New CMS Rule Could Improve Accountable Care Organizations

HHS | Permanent link
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is seeking public comment on five adjustments the agency wants to make to the Shared Savings Program used by Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs).

HHS Issues Proposed Rule to Expand Anti-Kickback Safe Harbors

HHS | Permanent link
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a proposed rule on October 3, 2014, that would amend the safe harbors included in both the anti-kickback statute and the civil monetary penalty rule.

More Flexibility for Certification of Electronic Health Records

HHS | Permanent link
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued a final rule on Release 2 of the Electronic Health Record (EHR) certification criteria. The new rule will take effect on October 14, 2014.

HRSA Plans to Merge Health Workforce Bureaus

HHS | Permanent link
The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the $8.4 billion agency charged with improving access to health care for the uninsured and medically vulnerable, plans to consolidate two of its bureaus into a newly created one.

Campaign Promotes Year-Round Enrollment in Medicaid and CHIP

HHS | Permanent link
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services initiated a new push in May to educate parents that they can enroll their children in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) at any time during the year, and that parents themselves may also be eligible for Medicaid.

New Leadership at HHS

HHS | Permanent link
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced her resignation in April, shortly after the official close of the nation’s first enrollment period for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. When the federally developed online insurance marketplace healthcare.gov first launched in October 2013, Sebelius was roundly criticized for what she herself called “a miserably frustrating experience” for many Americans who attempted to purchase coverage through the exchange. Nevertheless, she was able to testify that enrollment had hit 7.5 million, surpassing the administration’s target, when she appeared before the Senate Finance Committee earlier last month.