References cited in Physicians Making Change: Challenging Lethal but Legal Corporate Practices by Nicholas Freudenberg, DrPH
References cited in Disarming Nuclear Weapons by Robert Gould, MD
The Physician Payments Sunshine Act (Sunshine Act) requires manufacturers of drugs, medical devices and biologicals that participate in U.S. federal health care programs to report certain payments and items of value given to physicians and teaching hospitals. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has been charged with implementing the Sunshine Act and has called it the Open Payments Program.
As part of this program, manufacturers are now required to submit reports on payment, transfer and ownership information. Physicians have the right to review their reports and challenge reports that are false, inaccurate or misleading. However, the time frame for initiating disputes and having data corrected or publicly marked as disputed is extremely limited. Key steps and dates are below.
Step 1: Complete CMS e-verification process today
CMS requires a two-phase registration process. In phase 1, which is now open, physicians complete CMS' e-verification process via the CMS Enterprise Portal (EIDM). Click here to access step-by-step instructions.
Step 2: Register with CMS' Open Payments system
Once physicians have completed Step 1 and gained access to EIDM, physicians can move onto phase two and register in CMS' Open Payments System. Click here to access key information from CMS.
Step 3: Review and dispute data within 45 days
Physicians can request their individual report, review it and flag disputes after completing Step 2. CMS has indicated that it will not resolve disputes, but errors can be reported to manufacturers through the Open Payments System or directly through Open Payments contacts listed on most manufacturer websites. Physicians must initiate disputes by mid-August to have potentially erroneous data flagged in the initial public release.
Questions? E-mail CMS’ Open Payments Help Desk at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (855) 326-8366
9/30: Data released publicly
CMS publishes majority of data including physician-specific information
12/31: Last day to file dispute for 2013 report data
This is the deadline for initiating a dispute of incorrect data reported for transfers made and ownerships held in 2013. If a physician waits until after data has been made public to initiate a dispute, the data will not be marked as disputed in the public database until the agency updates the information, which could be six months to a year later.
Residents, fellows, and physicians participated in SFMS Physician Networking Mixer at Ironside last week. Attendees took advantage of the opportunity to meet SFMS leaders and connect with colleagues from various specialties and practice settings.
SFMS President-Elect Roger Eng, MD welcomed member physicians and provided a brief update on the issues SFMS is championing on behalf of our members, including the No On 46/MICRA campaign as well as SFMS' endorsement of the San Francisco soda tax initiative.
With great attendance and positive feedback from all, SFMS plans to organize similar social networking events in the coming months. Participants are also encouraged to attend the SFMS General Meeting on September 8 for another networking opportunity. Additional information can be found on the SFMS website or follow SFMS on Twitter (@SFMedSociety).
SFMS would like to thank Cooperative of American Physicians (CAP) for their support of our summer Networking Mixer. CAP is a physician-owned medical professional liability insurance company established in 1975 to manage the escalating cost of medical professional liability coverage. From its medical malpractice coverage and access to supplemental lines of business owners’ coverage to its expert medical liability management services and products, CAP offers health care professionals the tools to reduce their liability risks, improve patient safety and satisfaction, and minimize operational costs.
Legislation to create a tax of two cents per ounce on the distribution of soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages in San Francisco was officially placed on the November 4, 2014 ballot at today’s regular Board of Supervisors meeting.
The legislation has been endorsed by the San Francisco Medical Society and the California Medical Association to reduce the incidence of diabetes, obesity and tooth decay.
Dr. Lawrence Cheung, President of the San Francisco Medical Society stated, “As a forward thinking city, San Francisco is once again leading the nation in progressive public health policies. We will be the first major city in the country to actively decrease the consumption of sugar sweetened beverages as a way to combat our society's high rates of diabetes, obesity and heart disease. Revenue generated from this tax will go directly to programs that will improve our city's health and to those neighborhoods that need it most.“
Dr. Shannon Udovic-Constant, a pediatrician who authored the pioneering California Medical Association resolution regarding sugar sweetened beverages stated, “Our members have been actively involved in the effort to put a soda tax on the ballot here in San Francisco and in helping to build a grassroots army of dedicated volunteers to help take this critical public health message to all San Franciscans. We are excited that the Board of Supervisors has taken this final step to place the soda tax on the November ballot.“
SFMS Executive Director Mary Lou Licwinko stated, “We are delighted with the actions of the Board of Supervisors to put this important issue before San Francisco voters. SFMS has long championed a soda tax and, once again, San Francisco is leading the country on an important public health issue.”
The tax on the distribution of soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages in San Francisco is estimated to generate up to $54 million annually, which will be legally dedicated to fund active recreation and nutrition programs in schools, parks, and recreation centers; food access initiatives, drinking fountain and water bottle filling stations; and dental health services. Disadvantaged/low-income communities, including those most impacted by the diabetes and obesity epidemics, will be prioritized in funding decisions.
For more information, or for media inquiry, please contact Steve Heilig at (415) 561-0850 x270 or email@example.com.
If the policies set forth in the 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule take effect, physicians will be in for a lot of changes—many of them unfavorable—next year. Here are the top eight things that you should know:
Physicians in groups of 100 or more will see payment penalties or bonuses next year, determined by their group’s cost and quality performance in 2013. Bonuses and penalties based on 2014 performance will be applied to groups of 25-100 starting in 2016.
All physicians will be subject to the modifier beginning in 2017, at which point the potential penalty will double to 4 percent. The pool of money available for bonuses depends on how much is collected in penalties so potential bonuses are not yet known.
Source: AMA Wire, July 18, 2014