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April 17, 2014 A recent report by the Department of Health and Human Services' Inspector General found that one third-of nursing home residents in a Medicare-nursing home stay suffered an adverse event or other harm in August 2011 and that most of the events were preventable and caused by problems in staffing.[1]  Yet the nursing … Read more

On March 10, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a memorandum to Part D Plan Sponsors and Medicare Hospice Providers entitled, "Part D Payment for Drugs for Beneficiaries Enrolled in Hospice – Final 2014 Guidance" (Guidance).   The Guidance identifies a billing problem related to medications after Medicare beneficiaries elect hospice, and … Read more

To inspire, educate & empower the public & providers about the importance of advance care planning  Despite recent gains in public awareness about the need for advance care planning, studies continue to indicate that most Americans have not exercised their right to make decisions about their healthcare in the event that they cannot speak for themselves. … Read more

 No. 3:08-CV-1148 (AHN) (D. Conn.), filed July 31, 2008 Issue: Whether the use of a "stability" test to terminate home health coverage on the ground that the patient no longer needs skilled nursing care violates the Medicare statute and regulations. Relief Sought: Declaratory judgment, and temporary and permanent injunctive relief on behalf of an individual … Read more

 No. 09-cv-134-TUC-DCB (D.Ariz.), filed March 10, 2009.  Appeal filed June 30, 2011 (No. 11-16606, 9th Cir.). Issue: Whether the Secretary's aggressive methods for attempting to collect payments under his Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) program, directed at beneficiaries and their attorneys, violates the Medicare statute and the Due Process Clause. Relief sought: Declaratory and injunctive relief … Read more

 No. CV 08-2309-PHX-ROS (D.Ariz.), filed December 18, 2008. Appeal filed March 6, 2012 (No. 12-15478, 9th Cir.). Issue: Whether the Secretary's exclusion of coverage for dental care in extraordinary circumstances where the care is necessary to treat a medical condition violates the Medicare statute and policy provisions, and the Equal Protection Clause. Relief Sought: Declaratory judgment … Read more

 No. 11-1703 (D.Conn.), filed November 3, 2011 Issue: Whether the Secretary's policy of allowing hospitalized Medicare beneficiaries to be placed in "observation status," rather than formally admitting them, deprives them of their Part A coverage in violation of the Medicare statute, the Administrative Procedure Act, the Freedom of Information Act, and the Due Process Clause.  … Read more

On Tuesday, April 1st, President Obama signed into law the "Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014" (H.R. 4302).[1] This bill is a one year short-term "fix" or "patch" to pending Medicare physician payment cuts under the current physician payment formula called the "sustainable growth rate" or "SGR".  Passed by voice vote in the House … Read more

On March 21, 2014, the Center for Medicare Advocacy, Inc., held its first annual national Voices of Medicare Summit and Sen. Jay Rockefeller Lecture. The event brought together advocates, thought leaders, researchers, policy makers and others for a day of reflection and collaboration. The theme of "Voices of Medicare" came to life in the stories … Read more

In its first analysis of adverse events in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General (OIG) reports that care is poor and dangerous for many residents.  OIG reports that nearly one in three Medicare beneficiaries who went to SNFs for 35 days or fewer in August 2011 … Read more