CMS Delays Sunshine Act Data Collection Until 2013

Implementation of this provision of the health law, which is designed to shed light on the financial arrangements between doctors, drug makers and medical device companies, will now begin in 2013.

Minnesota Public Radio: Govt. Won't Begin Collecting Physician Payment Data Until 2013
The federal government will delay carrying out a key part of the health care overhaul aimed at shedding light on the financial relationships between doctors, drug companies, and medical device makers. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid announced in a blog post that it needs more time and won't begin collecting the data under the so-called Physician Payments Sunshine Act until 2013 (Stawicki, 5/4). 

Modern Healthcare: CMS Delays Data Collection For Sunshine Act To 2013
The CMS has again extended the implementation of the Physician Payments Sunshine Act and will not require drug and device manufacturers to begin collecting data on payments to providers until 2013. The Physicians Payments Sunshine Act is a provision in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that is intended to increase public accountability and transparency (Lee, 5/4).

CQ HealthBeat: Grassley, Kohl Unhappy At CMS Delay On Physician Sunshine Initiative
Two senators said on Friday that they were disappointed to learn that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is postponing implementation of a provision in the health care law designed to disclose financial relationships between drug manufacturers and doctors. Republican Charles E. Grassley of Iowa and Democrat Herb Kohl of Wisconsin pushed for the "sunshine" requirement in the law. Most manufacturers of drugs, medical devices, biologics and medical supplies will have to publicly list many payments of value to doctors and teaching hospitals (Norman, 5/4).

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Ain't No Sunshine Yet For Docs
CMS has announced that the agency will not require companies to collect transparency data before January 1, 2013. The new timeline is a delay from the original Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which required HHS to come up with final reporting procedures by October 1, 2011. Instead, draft regulations were released in December of 2011; during the following 60-day comment period, CMS was bombarded with more than 300 comments from stakeholders (Gold, 5/7.

In other news related to the health law -

The Hill: White House Touts Health Law's Benefits For Nurses In New Report
The 2010 healthcare law is benefiting nurses and helping to cure nursing shortages, the Obama administration says in a new report to be released on Monday. The report's release coincides with the start of National Nurses Week and comes as President Obama launches his reelection effort with special attention to healthcare issues. The campaign launched a nursing-specific initiative — Nurses for Obama — in March. "Thanks to the President's new healthcare law, there will be significantly more nurses to help make our healthcare system stronger," White House official Cecilia Munoz writes in a blog post (Viebeck, 5/7).

Meanwhile, on the political front -

CQ HealthBeat: What If Republicans Go Big On Health Care? Dr. Price Has A Plan
Take an ambitious plan laid out by Rep. Tom Price of Georgia, a House Ways and Means Committee member who chairs the Republican Policy Committee. … Price is one of the fiercest House critics of "Obamacare." Yet his proposal, if looked at in the broadest terms, shares some similarities with the health law. It aims to give most, if not all, Americans access to health care. It would give lower income people financial help to buy coverage. And it relies on pooled purchasing to help insurance buyers get a better deal (Reichard, 5/4).

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