Tag: HHS

Recent Big-Ticket HIPAA Settlements Drive Home Need for Organizational Commitment

By David Slaughter, JD, Senior Legal Editor The month of July saw two hospitals reach multimillion-dollar Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy and security settlements with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Each case began with that most mundane of data breaches, the stolen laptop, but once HHS investigators started […]

Prepare for HIPAA Privacy/Security Audits This Summer, Experts Advise

By Gwen Cofield Now that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has begun prescreening questionnaires for Phase 2 privacy and security audits, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-covered entities should make sure they’re prepared on the compliance areas HHS’ Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has indicated it plans to emphasize.

Medicaid Expansion Could Improve Access to Behavioral Health Services, HHS Says

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a report showing that states can improve access to behavioral health services for residents by expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. “Substance use disorders and mental illness are prevalent and serious public health problems in American communities,” the HHS says in a press […]

Reform Reinsurance Fund Refund Requests Due Soon

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced an April 30 deadline for claiming certain overpayments of the transitional reinsurance fee. The announcement covers overpayments due to miscalculating enrollment counts on which the fee is based. Such miscalculations occur for two reasons, CMS said: misapplication of a permitted method for determining the annual enrollment count; […]

HHS Secretary Says Sorry Over Failed Launch of Health Care Reform Website

In apologizing for the failed launch of the healthcare.gov website, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius conceded to a House committee panel that accessing the site has been a “miserably frustrating experience for way too many Americans.” She expressed frustration regarding the flawed launch of the site, to be used to purchase affordable […]

3rd Circuit: For-profit Cannot Avoid Contraceptive Mandate Based on Religion Objections

For-profit, secular corporations cannot argue that they are exercising religious beliefs to avoid the contraceptive coverage mandate under health care reform, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled July 26. Such entities are “artificial beings” created to make money and cannot exercise religion,” which is an inherently “human” right,” the 3rd Circuit opined. Accordingly, […]

Stop-Loss Insurers Would Not Be Health Exchange ‘Navigators’ Under HHS Proposal

The health reform law provides that entities called “Navigators” will assist consumers and small businesses in researching health insurance exchanges — but stop-loss insurers for self-funded health plans won’t be one of them. Those insurers, as well as individuals and other entities with too close a financial relationship to such insurers, would be excluded from […]