Can you really patent a human gene? U.S. Appeals Court will soon decide

On Monday, the United States Federal Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral argument in Association of Molecular Pathology v. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.  The court’s decision, expected in the coming months, could affect the validity of thousands of existing gene patents. Under the U.S. Patent Act, “[w]hoever invents or discovers any new and useful […]

CMS Will Change Physician Signature Requirement for Laboratory Requisitions

As we previously reported, on February 11, 2011, the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) informed various trade associations that it was pulling back a new rule requiring physician signatures on all laboratory requisitions. Although an official announcement to this effect was expected due to concerns expressed by lab associations and others, it appears […]

Redefining the Concept of a Disabled Employee under the ADA

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission promulgated new regulations on the issue of how to define “disability” under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  The guidance identifies a list of new conditions that would come under the definition of a disability, including autism, diabetes, epilepsy and post-traumatic stress disorder. The purpose and intent of the Act […]

Senate Passes 1099 Reporting Repeal; Shortfall to Be Addressed by Repayment of Health Care Insurance Tax Credit

On Tuesday, the United States Senate voted 87–12 to repeal a controversial tax-reporting measure included in last year’s healthcare law, which would have required businesses that made payments in excess of $600 to vendors to file a 1099 form in each instance.  The news will undoubtedly be well-received by businesses, which had argued that the […]

Wage Theft Prevention Act Takes Effect April 9, 2011

In December 2010, Governor David A. Patterson signed the Wage Theft Prevention Act into law.  The Act is significant because it imposes new notice and recordkeeping requirements on all employers and increases penalties for violations of wage and hour requirements. The new obligations created by the WTPA are summarized below. New York law currently provides […]

CMS Issues Final Rule on Civil Money Penalties for Nursing Homes

On March 18, 2011, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) issued new federal regulations implementing Section 6111 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and changing the way the federal government imposes and collects civil money penalties (“CMPs”) when nursing homes do not meet Medicare and Medicaid participation requirements.  The Final Rule […]

CMS Proposes Rules for New ACOs

On March 31, 2011, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed much-anticipated rules under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) to regulate new Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs).  According to CMS, ACOs are groups of health care providers that “work together to treat an individual patient across care settings, including doctor’s offices, […]

NYS Department of Health Announces Plan to Add Community First Choice Option to State Medicaid Plan

On March 18, 2011, Commissioner of Health, Nirav R. Shah, M.D., M.P.H., announced that the Health Department would begin the process of amending the State Medicaid Plan to add a new federal model for community based long term care.  The new program, called the Community First Choice Option, will be targeted at providing long term […]

O&A Attorneys to Speak at the 2011 AAB Annual Meeting

Jeffrey J. Sherrin, Kurt E. Bratten and Charles C. Dunham, IV, will be speaking at the American Association of Bioanalysts‘ 2011 Annual Meeting and Educational Conference. The AAB’s Annual Meeting and Educational Conference is being held in Austin, Texas and runs from May 12 – 14, 2011. On May 12th, Kurt E. Bratten will be […]

O&A’s Expanding Healthcare Fraud and Abuse Unit

Several years ago, O’Connell and Aronowitz formed a Healthcare Fraud and Abuse Unit as an adjunct to its well-established health law practice. The Healthcare Fraud and Abuse Unit focuses on all fraud and abuse issues, both civil and criminal, that impact health care providers.  Recently, the unit was expanded with the addition of Richard A. […]