On January 20, 2001, President George W. Bush signed a Directive in the form of a memorandum to federal executive offices and agencies that holds in abeyance previously published regulations from the Clinton administration. Specifically, those regulations that have been published in the Federal Register, the manual that publishes all federal regulations, but are not effective will be postponed for 60 days.
Accordingly, two health care "candidates" for this Directive are the Physician Self-Referral Law ("Stark II") and the Final Privacy regulation. Both have been published recently in the Federal Register. Moreover, both regulations are currently not effective. Therefore, it seems likely that the Directive may affect the effective dates for both regulations.
Stark II (Phase I) was scheduled to be effective on January 4, 2002 (except for the specific regulation related to referrals to Home Health Agencies which was scheduled to become effective February 5, 2001). While not absolutely clear (because the Directive does not specifically state which regulations apply), the effective dates for Stark II have apparently been extended for 60 days.
Additionally, the Final Privacy regulation was scheduled to become effective on February 26, 2001, although full implementation will not be required until 24 months from the effective date. Full implementation suggests that entities do not have to comply with the regulation until the regulation is "implemented." Thus, in this case, the effective date does not appear to have a profound impact. We believe the most likely result is that the effective date and the implementation date will not be postponed because of statutory deadlines in the regulation. We will advise further when the Department determining whether, and to what extent, the Directive affects the Final Privacy Regulation.
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, PLEASE CONTACT THE AMERICAN LITHOTRIPSY SOCIETY AT 781-895-9098.
Visit us again to receive up-to-the-minute reports on major issues such as the Health Care Finance Administration's (HCFA) proposed implementation of the Stark II (Physician Ownership) regulations and HCFA's proposed rates for lithotripsy performed in/out patient and ambulatory surgical center settings.
For additional information contact, Wesley E. Harrington, CAE, Executive Director of ALS at:
American Lithotripsy Society
305 Second Avenue, Suite 200
Waltham, Massachusetts 02451
Telephone: (781) 895-9098
Fax: (781) 895-9088
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