Health Law Matters

Azar Indicates Reforms Will Continue in 2019

The Week in Health Law

  • In a speech at a recent conference, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (“HHS”) Secretary Alex Azar indicated 2019 will be a “truly significant” year for regulatory reform and continued movement toward greater utilization of value-based care.   
  • Saying that current regulations are a barrier to coordinated care, Azar indicated HHS’s ongoing goal of “providing patients with real price and quality transparency, using innovative patient-focused payment models in Medicare and Medicaid, and putting patients in charge of their own data with interoperable health IT.”
  • Azar identified four specific laws being reviewed for potential reform via new rulemaking: the Stark law, the anti-kickback law, HIPAA, and mental health/substance abuse privacy rules.
  • Azar also indicated that: “Our programs pay for sickness and procedures, rather than health and wellness – which has to be the ultimate goal of any healthcare system.”

More trending Health Law topics this week:

  • Quality Payment Program Participation Exceeds CMS Expectations

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Attorney Spotlight

Thomas D. Anthony is the former chair of FBT's Health Care Industry Team. He focuses on counseling health care entities on corporate transactions, regulatory compliance and joint ventures.

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