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Cybersecurity:  Investing in your Firm’s Future

Recent cybersecurity breaches such as Target and Neiman Marcus have caused the U.S. government to start implementing security initiatives throughout all sectors to help defend against cyber-attacks. According to a 2012 global survey of securities exchanges, 89% identified cyber-crime as a potential systemic risk and 53% reported experiencing a cyber-attack in the previous year.* 

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The creation of the Financial Reporting and Audit Task Force (“Task Force”) was announced by the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) on July 2, 2013 in an effort to strengthen the agency’s efforts to identify and prosecute securities law violations as they relate to fraudulent or improper financial reporting and audit failures. 

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In the August 22, 2014 Federal Register, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued CMS-1607-F. This Final Rule revises the Medicare hospital inpatient prospective payment systems (IPPS) for payments to acute care hospitals for discharges occurring on or after October 1, 2014. The Final rule also included certain important changes from the Proposed Rule relating to the Connecticut rural wage index.  

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In accordance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 section 3132 requires CMS to collect appropriate data and information to facilitate hospice payment reform. On August 20, 2014, CMS released their final ruling, wage index and payment updates entitled CMS-1609-F 42 CFR Parts 405 and 418. 

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With more than 2,000 entrepreneurs, investors, data scientists, researchers, policy experts, government employees and more in attendance, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is releasing new data and launching new initiatives at the annual Health Datapalooza conference in Washington, D.C. 

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Effective July 18, 2014, the Division of Banks issued “Final Amendments to 209 CMR 43.00: Audit Requirements for Credit Unions”. The purpose of the amendment is to clarify the responsibilities of credit union audit committees, as well as to establish audit frequency and share verifications requirements. The amended regulation are as follows: 

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A technical termination of a partnership occurs when there is a sale or exchange of 50% or more of the total interest in the profits and capital of a partnership within a 12-month period.  

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The Medicare trustees recently announced that the latest projection on Medicare’s hospital insurance trust fund indicates that the fund will remain solvent until 2030, which is a four year improvement from the prior year’s report. The Affordable Care Act is being credited with controlling per capita spending, which is projected to continue to grow slower than the overall economy for the next several years. 

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With the large number of new patients enrolled after the full ACA roll out, both Medical Assistance and some traditional carriers have experienced delays in fully enrolling some of the new participants causing delays in payments for services rendered. Practices need to keep this in mind and may need to modify the billing protocols to make certain the carrier has received and processed (even if the payment is on hold) the claim. If 60 days goes by and the practice has not received payment or a notification of a hold due to eligibility verification (even though the law generally requires a 30 day processing) the practice should consider resubmission to toll any time limits from expiring.

Close coordination with the MA carrier and with any other carrier of substance will go a long way to eliminating a later SNAFU on ultimate collection when all of the dust has settled (and we’re sure it will ultimately settle).


Published Date: June 10, 2014
By: Donna Marbury

 

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The IRS has recently issued final regulations that allow the use of truncated taxpayer identification numbers (TTINs) on payee statements and certain other documents.

An IRS TTIN is an individual's social security number (SSN), IRS individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN), IRS adoption taxpayer identification number (ATIN), or IRS employer identification number (EIN) in which the first five digits of the nine-digit number are replaced with Xs or asterisks. The TTIN takes the same format of the identifying number it replaces, for example XXX-XX-0123 when replacing a SSN, or XX-XXX0123 when replacing an EIN. 

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