Latest Patient Charity Settlement With Justice Department Becomes Fourth Such Deal In As Many Months
Federal authorities argued that drugmakers and charities created programs that favored specific medicines over lower-cost options.
Another Patient Charity Settles Charges It Helped Pay Medicare Kickbacks
After a contentious, two-year battle with federal authorities, a patient charity called Patient Services agreed to pay $3 million to settle allegations of violating federal law by enabling drug makers to pay kickbacks to Medicare patients who took their medicines.The settlement marks the fourth time in as many months that a patient charity has reached a deal with the U.S. Department of Justice, which has been probing the ties between the pharmaceutical industry and these organizations over concerns they are gaming the system. Over the past two years, numerous pharmaceutical companies have similarly reached settlements. Federal authorities have argued that drug makers and charities, which provide patients with financial assistance to obtain drugs, created programs to favored specific medicines over lower-cost options. As a result, two lawmakers asked the Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services to update its oversight and require more disclosure from charities about their operations. (Silverman, 1/24)
In other Medicare news —
Joint Replacement Bundled Payments Losing Their Appeal In BPCI Advanced
Analyses of CMS data on Medicare's largest bundled-payment demonstration suggest providers may have reached the limit of their ability to streamline joint replacement procedures. While the joint replacement bundle for hips and knees has been one of the most popular of Medicare's Bundled Payment for Care Improvement Advanced program, providers are shifting to bundles for medical and chronic conditions like sepsis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. (Meyer, 1/24)