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Physician News Roundup: Open Payments, IPAB, and an AL Whistleblower Suit

Jacqueline Fellows, for HealthLeaders Media, August 14, 2014

Ebola is snagging the big headlines, but physicians have many other things to think about, not least of which is their ability to dispute the accuracy of data on payments made to them by device manufacturers and drug makers.

Most of the news of late about physicians has centered on the ebola outbreak that has doctors from across the world both riveted and worried, and rightly so. When a big health story dominates the landscape, it easy to overlook other important notable events such as the pressure CMS is under because of technical glitches plaguing yet another federal website—Open Payments. That's just one of three items that caught my attention this week.

Open Payments Website Has Healthcare.gov-like Problems
The American Medical Association is ratcheting up the pressure it is putting on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to delay the release of financial relationships between physicians and medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturers as part of the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, also known as the Open Payments Act.

Like the rollout of the federal health insurance exchange website, the Open Payments system has been plagued with technical difficulties and complaints that the registration process is too long, cumbersome, and difficult to navigate.

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