On July 25, 2017, the U.S. House of Representatives passed by voice vote a bipartisan bill which is now in the Senate’s hands for consideration, the Medicare Part B Improvement Act of 2017. The bill would amend the Stark Law (Section 1877(h)(1) of the Social Security Act) and impact other provisions governing Medicare Part B.
The bill would amend the Stark Law:
- to provide that the writing requirement for certain compensation arrangements may be satisfied by means determined by the HHS Secretary, including “a collection of documents, including contemporaneous documents evidencing the course of conduct between the parties;”
- to include provisions for “indefinite” holdovers involving certain personal service arrangements and leases of office space or equipment; and
- to provide for up to 90 days to obtain missing signatures in certain compensation arrangements that have become noncompliant.
These changes codify certain Stark Law changes previously made by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule that took effect on January 1, 2016 (see related article here). Continue Reading