Issue: Volume XXIII, No. 17 - December 19, 2016

Expense of Phlebotomy Leases Raise Cost of Care in Australia

CEO SUMMARY: In the United States, medical labs have long recognized that paying over-market rates to lease phlebotomy space in physicians’ officers is an inducement and a violation of federal anti-kickback laws. In Australia, a law in 2010 that removed the cap on what labs could pay to lease phlebotomy space in physicians’ offices caused …

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Patient Privacy Breach at Quest Attracts National News Coverage

IT WAS NATIONAL NEWS RECENTLY when Quest Diagnostics Incorporated disclosed a security breach involving the protected health information (PHI) of 34,000 individual customers. This episode is a reminder to clinical labs and pathology groups of the need to guard protected health information. In fact, as part of its compliance with federal law, it was Quest …

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December 19, 2016 Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News

Pathologists and lab managers interested in developing diagnostic management teams within their hospitals and health systems will be interested in an upcoming conference on that topic. Organized by Michael Laposata, MD, PhD, Chairman of the Department of Pathology at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, it will take place at the Galveston Island Convention Center …

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Revisiting the ‘Substantially in Excess Rule’

BY NOW, NEARLY EVERY LAB MANAGER knows that Medicare lab test fee cuts will commence in just 13 months, on Jan. 1, 2018. The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services estimates that the final rule for PAMA private payer market price reporting will produce cuts of $5.4 billion over 10 years. (See TDRs, November …

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Much Disruption for Labs In 2016’s Top 10 Stories

CEO SUMMARY: Within THE DARK REPORT’S list of the Top 10 Lab Industry Stories for 2016 is one story of disruption that might have been one story of disruption about to happen. The disintegration of Theranos during 2016 is the big story about a self-proclaimed disruptor of the lab industry that finds itself struggling just …

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PAMA Reporting Penalties Can Be Substantial for Laboratories

STARTING JAN. 1, 2017, there are substantial penalties for labs that fail to properly meet the complex lab test price marketing reporting requirements of the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014. Labs that fail to do so face the potential of stiff, multi-million dollar fines. “Under PAMA, clinical labs need to report full and …

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UHC, LabCorp Play Hard Ball With Texas Lab Contracts

CEO SUMMARY: In launching BeaconLBS in Texas, UnitedHealthcare included a new, more onerous twist than it used for BeaconLBS in Florida. To be a BeaconLBS in-network ‘lab of choice,’ a lab must be in the lowest quartile for lab test prices. Any lab above the 25th percentile would have to renegotiate its contract with UHC …

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