• October 31, 2014

    Symbion Must Shed Center In FTC Deal Over $792M Merger

    The Federal Trade Commission said Friday it would require Surgery Center Holdings Inc. and Symbion Holdings Corp. to divest ownership of an ambulatory surgical center in Florida as part of a deal settling claims that the companies' proposed $792 million merger would be anti-competitive, as the state of Florida sued to block the merger.

  • October 31, 2014

    Medicare Finalizes 2015 Pay Policies For Doctors, Hospitals

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on Friday finalized its 2015 reimbursement policies affecting physicians and hospital outpatient departments, introducing new packaged payments, increasing its scrutiny of off-campus billing and backing off proposed pay cuts for mental health care.

  • October 31, 2014

    FTC OKs Stay In Phoebe Putney Divestiture Fight

    The Federal Trade Commission agreed Thursday to stay a case trying to force Phoebe Putney Health System Inc. to divest a recently acquired hospital unit, as Georgia state officials examine whether certificate of need requirements might thwart the sale.

  • October 31, 2014

    ABRY Partners Sells HealthPort 5 Years After IPO Attempt

    ABRY Partners has found a buyer for Georgia-based health care technology company HealthPort Inc. after a tumultuous eight years of ownership that included a failed initial public offering attempt at the peak of the financial crisis.

  • October 31, 2014

    HHS Watchdog Details 2015 Plans To Scrutinize Medical Billing

    The Office of Inspector General at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Friday detailed its priorities for investigating Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements in fiscal 2015, vowing to scrutinize billing by insurance plans, medical device makers and an array of health care providers.

  • October 31, 2014

    Ebola Nurse Showing No Symptoms Avoids Quarantine

    A Maine state judge on Friday refused to grant state health officials’ bid to quarantine a nurse who treated Ebola patients in West Africa, ruling that a quarantine is not necessary because she is showing no symptoms of the disease and is not infectious.

  • October 31, 2014

    CMS Finalizes Rule On Home Health Pay, Fraud Prevention

    Federal health regulators on Thursday issued changes to Medicare’s home health prospective payment system for 2015, reducing the national standardized payment amount and clarifying face-to-face encounter requirements as part of the second year of adjustments under the Affordable Care Act.

  • October 31, 2014

    8 Ballot Measures Attorneys Will Be Watching

    Voters on Tuesday will decide the fate of myriad state and local initiatives that address issues as varied as fracking, medical marijuana and care for terminally ill patients. Here, Law360 looks at eight ballot initiatives that could have significant nationwide implications, should they pass or fail.

  • October 31, 2014

    Long-Term Health Care REITs Omega, Aviv Merge In $3B Deal

    Omega Healthcare Investors Inc. is set to acquire Aviv REIT Inc., which shares its focus on long-term-care properties, in a stock-for-stock deal that values Aviv at $3 billion, the companies said Friday, in a move meant to create an industry powerhouse.

  • October 31, 2014

    Walgreen Says Gov’t Deal Dooms Gift Card FCA Suit

    Walgreen Co. is asking a Tennessee federal judge to throw out a False Claims Act suit over its alleged use of gift cards to induce Medicare and Medicaid recipients to switch pharmacies, arguing that the complaint addresses issues that have already been settled with the government.

  • October 30, 2014

    Dignity Health To Pay $37M To End Medicare Payments Row

    Dignity Health agreed to pay $37 million to settle a whistleblower suit alleging 13 of the nonprofit system’s hospitals overcharged Medicare and the U.S. military’s insurance system by admitting patients who could have been treated as outpatients, California prosecutors said Thursday.

  • October 30, 2014

    With Major Hurdles Cleared, LICH Barrels Toward Finish Line

    Fortis Property Group LLC and New York University's Langone Medical Center this week cleared one of the last hurdles to a controversial $240 million deal to redevelop Brooklyn's Long Island College Hospital. While the path forward is now clear, the two still face several months of negotiations over future development and must continue to woo wary stakeholders, experts say.

  • October 30, 2014

    11th Circ. Revives Part Of Whistleblower Medicare Suit

    The Eleventh Circuit on Thursday reinstated parts of a former Health Management Associates Inc. executive's whistleblower suit accusing the hospital operator of engaging in an illegal Medicare kickback scheme, finding that his position made some of his allegations sufficiently reliable.

  • October 30, 2014

    Miami Cos. Dinged For Insuring Sanctioned Individuals

    The U.S. Treasury Department on Wednesday slapped a trio of Miami, Florida, health insurance providers with a nearly $129,000 fine for issuing policies to various individuals whom the agency had previously sanctioned under its narcotics trafficking regulations.

  • October 30, 2014

    Highmark Plan Doesn't Violate UPMC Deal, Pa. Court Finds

    A new Medicare product by Highmark Health that allegedly denies seniors in-network access to medical services at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center is not in violation of an agreement with the hospital, Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court said on Thursday.

  • October 30, 2014

    GOP Lawmakers Want Info On Diplomats' ACA Benefits

    House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp and Foreign Affairs Chairman Ed Royce called on the Internal Revenue Service on Wednesday to disclose whether foreign diplomats are receiving health coverage tax credits through the Affordable Care Act, saying it's unfair if U.S. taxpayers are subsidizing foreign nationals.

  • October 30, 2014

    NYC Drug Treatment Co. Hit With TRO In Medicaid Fraud Suit

    A New York City substance abuse treatment company accused of ongoing Medicaid fraud involving kickbacks from its outpatients was hit with a temporary restraining order on Wednesday that prevents the organization from evicting residents in its short-term housing facilities who refuse to take part in the alleged scheme.

  • October 30, 2014

    $500M Suit Claims Kimberly-Clark Gowns Don't Stop Ebola

    Kimberly-Clark Corp. was hit with a $500 million proposed class action in California federal court on Wednesday by a surgeon alleging the company misrepresented the protective qualities of its medical gowns, which he claims can be penetrated by viruses like Ebola and bacteria.

  • October 29, 2014

    Nossaman Dodges Malpractice Suit In Hospital’s Leasing Row

    A California appeals court on Wednesday refused to revive a hospital operator’s suit accusing Nossaman LLP and an ex-partner of legal malpractice and breach of fiduciary duty in a property lease dispute, ruling the claims are blocked by a one-year statute of limitations.

  • October 29, 2014

    Attys Flubbed Trial Against Doctors' Group, Ex-Client Claims

    A former client of Houston's Pendergraft & Simon LLP has sued two of the firm's lawyers for $3 million in a case that accuses the lawyers of a laundry list of alleged flubs in a dispute between a doctors' group and its former president and improperly advised the group to pursue Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Expert Analysis

  • 'Green Revolution' Is Here — Try Not To Lose Your Head

    William J. Simonitsch

    "Ganjapreneurs" beware. Cannabusiness is fraught with risk, even when legal under state law, and bankruptcy does not appear to be an option for anyone in the supply chain, says William Simonitsch of K&L Gates LLP.

  • Recall Or Enhancement? Read These Medical Device Rules

    Pamela F. Forrest

    A significant departure in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's final guidance on distinguishing medical device recalls from enhancements involves changes to references of nonviolative devices and nonviolative labels — the addition of a new warning now will not be considered a recall, say attorneys at King & Spalding LLP.

  • How To Handle Ebola Fear In The Workplace: 4 Scenarios

    Mark A. Konkel

    An employee has just returned from a trip to West Africa. Can you require him to stay home, essentially quarantined, for 21 days? This is just one scenario in which fears of Ebola may implicate an employer's obligations under a number of laws — not least of which are disability discrimination laws prohibiting differential treatment based on a perception of someone's physical condition, say attorneys with Kelley Drye & Warren LLP.

  • HHS Looks To Existing Procurement Tool For Ebola Drugs

    Jennifer Plitsch

    For companies with an interest in assisting the government in its Ebola prevention and treatment efforts, a strong working understanding of a broad agency announcement originally issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in 2009 is vital, say Jennifer Plitsch and Michael Wagner of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • Use Social Media For Legal Service Only As A Last Resort

    Steven Richard

    Courts remain largely skeptical about allowing litigants to serve and notify evasive parties of legal proceedings through their social media accounts. A recent split ruling by the Oklahoma Supreme Court shows the competing considerations, say Steven Richard and Britt Killian of Nixon Peabody LLP.

  • A Different Kind Of Hospitality Opportunity In China

    Ian K. Lewis

    Entire populations are considering health care and “senior living” options, affecting government policy and opening up new opportunities for industry investors in branded residences of a different kind. Hotel operators that have medical tourism experience may find considerable scope for expansion in China, says Ian Lewis of Mayer Brown LLP.

  • 5 Issues For Employers To Consider When Shaping Benefits

    Michelle Capezza

    In light of recent legal developments, most notably passage of the Affordable Care Act, and ongoing national issues, such as America's looming retirement crisis, corporate employers will continue to face incredible challenges to their offered health and benefit plans, says Michelle Capezza of Epstein Becker & Green PC.

  • New Calif. Data Breach Rules Bring Obligations And Debate

    Ellen Giblin

    The new law regarding the California breach notification requirement related to identity theft prevention and mitigation services has already spurred debate on two issues, say attorneys with Edwards Wildman Palmer LLC.

  • OIG Remains Focused On Pharmaceutical Copayment Coupons

    Eve M. Brunts

    A report and special advisory bulletin from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General are the latest examples of ongoing scrutiny and challenges involving copayment coupons offered by pharmaceutical manufacturers, say Eve Brunts and Smita Singh of Ropes & Gray LLP.

  • New Jurisdictional Issues When Moving To Quash A Subpoena

    Steven Luxton

    The Nevada federal court's recent ruling in Agincourt Gaming LLC v. Zynga Inc. is an important reminder that a nonparty wanting to challenge a civil subpoena should consider carefully the appropriate jurisdiction in which to file a motion to quash under recently enacted Rule 45, say Steven Luxton and Brad Nes of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP.