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Thomas Sullivan - Policy & Medicine Writing Staff
Columbia, Maryland
Former political consultant who founded Rockpointe, Inc. a bio-medical education company in 1995.
Interests: marketing, politics, baseball, cycling, medicine, university of florida sports, medical education, track and cross country, driving kids to various practices
Recent Activity
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In early February, Congress passed a massive bipartisan budget deal to fund the government through March 23, 2018, suspend the debt ceiling until 2019, raise budget caps by nearly $300 billion over two years, and fund various parts of the... Continue reading
Posted 15 hours ago at Policy and Medicine
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This May, the 12th International Pharmaceutical and Medical Device Compliance Congress will take place in Vienna, Austria, at the Hotel Savoyen, from the 14th through the 16th. Keynote speakers for this conference include: Nicola Bedlington, Secretary General, European Patients Forum... Continue reading
Posted 16 hours ago at Policy and Medicine
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The Trump Administration recently released its fiscal year (FY) 2019 budget proposal, including extensive health policy provisions. The budget proposal features numerous program integrity provisions. For instance, the budget calls for: a $45 million increase in Health Care Fraud and... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Policy and Medicine
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On January 30, 2018, Federal U.S. District Court Judge William Young sentenced Aegerion to pay some of the roughly $36 million fine for off-label marketing to Juxtapid patients. In November, Judge Young rejected an initial plea deal between the Department... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Policy and Medicine
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On January 17, 2018, the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight held a hearing entitled “The Opioid Crisis: The Current Landscape and CMS Actions to Prevent Opioid Misuse.” The hearing focused on efforts by the Centers for Medicare and... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Policy and Medicine
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In an article authored by the American Enterprise Institute’s Resident Fellow and Milton Friedman Chair, James C. Capretta, he argues Medicare Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) haven’t produced savings for the federal government. He believes ACOs would become more efficient and... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Policy and Medicine
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The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) released a review of the Quality Payment Program (QPP), concluding CMS has made progress towards implementing the QPP, but challenges remain. CMS appears on track to deploy the IT systems needed for data... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Policy and Medicine
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In December 2017, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced plans to study whether consumers and healthcare professionals have the ability to “spot and report” deceptive prescription drug promotion practices. Reports of deceptive promotion are useful to FDA... Continue reading
Posted Feb 12, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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On January 24, 2018, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) launched a new website, LetsTalkAboutCost.org. The new website aims to provide consumers with easily understood information about the cost and coverage of medicines. The website utilizes an interactive... Continue reading
Posted Feb 9, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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In 2017, the improper payment rate for fee-for-service Medicare dropped to 9.5%, the first time since 2013 that figure has been below 10%. By comparison, the rate was 11% in 2016, and there was a $4.9 billion year-over-year decrease in... Continue reading
Posted Feb 8, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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During his last few days as Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie’s administration enacted an aggressive regulation in an stated attempt to combat the opioid epidemic. The regulation was finalized in late December 2017 and required that beginning January 15,... Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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Recently, Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy introduced the Helping Ensuring Low-income Patients have Access to Care and Treatment, (the “HELP Act”). The legislation would close loopholes in the United States Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) 340B program and hold... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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Tomorrow, February 7, 2018, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will be hosting a Webinar and Question and Answer session with CMS Open Payments program experts from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm EST. CMS has been hosting these... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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In December, the FDA issued a guidance describing best practices and procedures for timely, transparent, and effective communications between investigational new drug application (IND) sponsors and FDA at critical junctures in drug development, which may facilitate earlier availability of safe... Continue reading
Posted Feb 5, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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On January 30, 2018, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finalized the “Opioid Analgesic REMS Education Blueprint for Health Care Providers Involved in the Treatment and Monitoring of Patients with Pain.” The Blueprint includes educational messages for health... Continue reading
Posted Feb 2, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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President Donald Trump gave his second State of the Union address this week, and while reactions to his speech were mixed, he mentioned several items of importance to the healthcare space. Affordable Care Act First, he noted the repeal of... Continue reading
Posted Feb 1, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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During the 2017 Oregon Legislature session, Senator Steiner Hayward and Representative Rob Nosse introduced legislation on prescription drug advertising that would have required manufacturers to disclose prices in any advertisement for prescription drugs in Oregon. The bill was introduced on... Continue reading
Posted Jan 31, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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Several articles about continuing medical education (CME) were recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). One article discussed the importance of regulatory alignment with the boards while the other discussed the proposed CME pyramid. CME Pyramid... Continue reading
Posted Jan 30, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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In mid-January 2018, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) met to discuss Medicare payment adequacy and vote on 2019 Medicare payment update recommendations. The recommendations approved during this meeting will appear in the 2018 Report to Congress by the Commission.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 29, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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During the January meeting of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC), staff and Commissioners discussed the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), among other hot topics. The commissioners proposed to eliminate the current Merit-based Incentive Payment System and in its place... Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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On October 27, 2017, CMS issued a draft Survey and Certification Memo (S & C Memo) in which it announced its intention to reverse a previous policy regarding “immediate jeopardy” and federal enforcement actions. The new draft policy significantly revises... Continue reading
Posted Jan 25, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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With the opioid crisis rapidly gaining steam, we are starting to see some of the legal ramifications from the overprescribing of opioids. Recently, two doctors and their business partner were indicted in federal court for allegations that they were illegally... Continue reading
Posted Jan 24, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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The issue of substandard and counterfeit medicines has been known for some time. Since it is not often discussed openly, it is difficult to get an appreciation for the scope of the problem. However, a new WHO report, backed by... Continue reading
Posted Jan 24, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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In AARP vs. EEOC, U.S. District Court Judge John D. Bates granted a motion by AARP to vacate the EEOC’s current wellness regulations, which allow companies to charge employees who decline to participate in wellness questionnaires and exams with penalties.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 23, 2018 at Policy and Medicine
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Immediately before the government shutdown, the Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee held a markup to advance three health care bills, including a measure designed to give drug and medical device companies more freedom to discuss off-label information, one that would... Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2018 at Policy and Medicine