Law & Legislation

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May 2024
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Editorial: Nurses prepare for tumultuous election

I was fresh out of the OR when I received a formal job offer from OR Manager. Although still hazy from an emergency laparoscopic appendectomy, I knew I would accept, reasoning the universe must be trying to tell me something. I also had no doubts about the other, very different…

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By: Matt Danford
January 23, 2024
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2024 limits set for non-monetary physician compensation

Editor's Note: Non-monetary compensation to physicians is limited to no more than $507 for calendar year 2024, according to a report on the federal Stark Law published December 27 in Lexology. The Stark Law applies to non-cash or cash-equivalent payments from hospitals, physician groups, labs and other provider entities. The…

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By: Matt Danford
January 10, 2024
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Bipartisan congressional letter calls for end to Medicare payment cuts

Editor's Note Nearly 200 members of Congress co-signed a letter urging House and Senate leaders to act quickly in order to prevent a 3.37% cut to Medicare reimbursement payments that was scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2024. The American Medical Association, which supports the effort, reported the news…

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By: Brita Belli
January 10, 2024
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Investigation reveals medical device safety testing concerns

Editor's Note Published December 21, a year-long investigation by KFF Health News into medical device malfunctions found that the FDA allows the sale of most medical devices, including many implants, without requiring tests for safety or effectiveness. Instead, manufacturers need to show only that they have “substantial equivalence” to an…

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By: Brita Belli
January 8, 2024
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The issue of fake nursing diplomas in the healthcare workforce

Initially, the massive nursing credentials scam—disclosed by federal prosecutors early last year—involved three once legitimate, now-shuttered, Florida nurses’ training institutions. Some two dozen criminal operators and recruiters have been arrested and indicted; an as-of-yet unknown number face decades behind bars. According to multiple indictments, most for wire fraud, the scammers…

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By: David C. Walsh
December 20, 2023
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Colonoscopy fees higher for hospitals than ASCs, study finds

Editor’s Note US hospitals charge approximately 55% higher average fees than ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) for colonoscopies covered by private health insurance. The findings, from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, appeared as a research letter in JAMA Health Forum on December 15. The analysis is one of…

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By: Brita Belli
December 18, 2023
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Social distancing outperforms closing borders in preventing virus spread

Editor’s Note Social distancing was more effective than closing borders in preventing the spread of COVID-19, according to a study published in Cell December 14. Conducted by Scripps Research, the study examined the efficacy of various mandates—including stay-at-home measures, social distancing, and travel restrictions— in preventing local and regional transmission…

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By: Brita Belli
December 15, 2023
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Bill seeks to improve cost transparency, provide relief to patients

Editor's Note The US House of Representatives may vote this week on The Lower Costs, More Transparency Act. Introduced September 8, the proposed act aims to boost healthcare pricing transparency so consumers can make more informed decisions. Key elements include: Hospitals, payers, ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs), and other facilities would…

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By: Brita Belli
December 11, 2023
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Proposed bill seeks to end costly insurance fees on electronic healthcare payments

Editor's Note A new bill introduced by a bipartisan group in Congress seeks to ban fees on electronic healthcare payments from insurance companies, which cost hospitals millions and are a particular burden on hospitals in rural areas, according to a November 28 press release. The bill is called the No…

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By: Brita Belli
November 29, 2023
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New California law expands workplace violence prevention measures

Editor's Note A new workplace violence law was enacted in California in September 2023 that requires all businesses to have a violence prevention plan in place by July 1, 2024, HealthLeaders November 7 reports. Employers already covered under the Workplace Violence Healthcare standard are exempted, as are law enforcement agencies…

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By: Brita Belli
November 27, 2023
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