Sunday, August 24, 2008

Weekend Update

This slow weekend opportunity provides us with an opportunity to follow up on a few recent items:
  • OPM has revised its FEHB government wide indemnity benefit plan solicitation. The new proposal deadline is October 2.
  • A Marketwatch report discloses that "the first biotech drugs were launched in the mid 1980s and now patents have expired on drugs worth more than $13 billion. Until very recently generic competition was not possible but now in Europe, the EMEA has issued guidelines and the first biosimilar has been approved." So there may be hope that Congress will enact a U.S. biosimilar / biogeneric law before too long.
  • Modern reports on cost projections for the ICD-10 mandate under HIPAA that HHS plans to implement on October 1, 2011. The estimates for provider, health plan and vendor compliance run into the billions of dollars. The article further explains that
    Despite the high costs and aggravation, the switch to ICD-10 will be worth the effort, according to HHS. It enumerated six categories in which society would benefit from the conversion to ICD-10: more accurate claims, fewer rejected claims, fewer improper claims, better understanding of new procedures, improved disease management, better understanding of health conditions and outcomes, and harmonization of disease monitoring and reporting worldwide.

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