CMS may update its Stark Law disclosure protocols

CMS is considering changes to its Stark Law voluntary self-referral disclosure protocols in an effort to streamline the process, according to a July 14 article in JDSupra from the law firm McGuireWoods. 

The voluntary protocol is a way to resolve technical violations under the physician self-referral law by submitting information to CMS about prohibited conduct. The change would limit the required disclosure information to a single form per disclosure instead of separate forms for each physician involved in a group practice.  

CMS is required to create a voluntary self-disclosure law for potential Stark Law violations, but because of the large scope of services covered under the law and the "strict liability nature of the statute," inadvertent violations frequently arise. 

Additionally, CMS tends to settle self-disclosed violations for much less than the potential financial penalties. Because of this, there is a significant backlog, and more than half of all submissions remain unaddressed. 

The streamlined process would allow group practices to answer the physician information form questions for all physicians collectively, rather than an individual form for each physician. 

Read more about the potential change here.

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