June 16, 2020

Around the nation: CMS threatens federal action against nursing homes that seize residents' stimulus funds

Daily Briefing

    CMS says it could bar nursing homes and assisted-living facilities that are found to have seized residents' coronavirus stimulus payments from participating in Medicaid and Medicare, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Florida, Maryland, and Texas.

    • Florida: The Republican National Committee (RNC) will hold a celebration at which President Trump will accept the Republican Party's nomination as its 2020 presidential candidate in Jacksonville, Florida, in August, the committee announced Thursday. The RNC originally had planned to hold both its national convention and the celebration of Trump's nomination in North Carolina, but had to move the celebration because North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper (D) declined to alter the state's restrictions on large gatherings, which are intended to curb transmission of the new coronavirus. RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel on Thursday said the committee still will conduct the official convention's official business in Charlotte (Oliphant, Reuters, 6/11; Linskey, Washington Post, 6/11).
    • Maryland: CMS on Thursday said nursing homes that seize residents' coronavirus stimulus payments could face federal enforcement actions. The agency said it has not directly received any complaints regarding nursing homes or assisted-living facilities seizing residents' stimulus funds, but it encouraged residents to file complaints with state survey agencies if they're asked to direct their stimulus funds to the facilities. CMS warned that it could bar facilities found to have engaged in the practice from participating in Medicaid and Medicare (Jagoda, The Hill, 6/11).
    • Texas: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) earlier this month voted unanimously to propose a $225 million fine against two Houston companies accused of making illicit telemarketing calls related to health insurance. FCC said the telemarketers made about one billion illegal robocalls that falsely claimed to offer health insurance plans from major insurers, including Aetna, Cigna, and others. The two telemarketing companies, JSquared Telecom and Rising Eagle Capital Group, did not respond to a request for comment, according to Reuters (Shepardson, Reuters, 6/9; Silverman, Houston Chronicle, 6/9).
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