(P.L. 104-191, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996)
Subtitle C–Data Collection
SEC. 221. ESTABLISHMENT OF THE HEALTH CARE FRAUD AND ABUSE DATA COLLECTION PROGRAM.
(a) In General.–Title XI (42 U.S.C. 1301 et seq.), as amended by sections 201 and 205, is amended by inserting after section 1128D the following new section: HEALTH CARE AND ABUSE DATA COLLECTION PROGRAM Sec. 1128E.
(a) General Purpose.–Not later than January 1, 1997, the Secretary shall establish a national health care fraud and abuse data collection program for the reporting of final adverse actions (not including settlements in which no findings of liability have been made) against health care providers, suppliers, or practitioners as required by subsection (b), with access as set forth in subsection (c), and shall maintain a database of the information collected under this section.
(b) Reporting of Information.–
(1) In general.–Each Government agency and health plan shall report any final adverse action (not including settlements in which no findings of liability have been made) taken against a health care provider, supplier, or practitioner.
(2) Information to be reported.–The information to be reported under paragraph (1) includes:
(A) The name and TIN (as defined in section 7701(a)(41) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) of any health care provider, supplier, or practitioner who is the subject of a final adverse action.
(B) The name (if known) of any health care entity with which a health care provider, supplier, or practitioner, who is the subject of a final adverse action, is affiliated or associated.
(C) The nature of the final adverse action and whether such action is on appeal.
(D) A description of the acts or omissions and injuries upon which the final adverse action was based, and such other information as the Secretary determines by regulation is required for appropriate interpretation of information reported under this section.
(3) Confidentiality.–In determining what information is required, the Secretary shall include procedures to assure that the privacy of individuals receiving health care services is appropriately protected.
(4) Timing and form of reporting.–The information required to be reported under this subsection shall be reported regularly (but not less often than monthly) and in such form and manner as the Secretary prescribes. Such information shall first be required to be reported on a date specified by the Secretary.
(5) To whom reported.–The information required to be reported under this subsection shall be reported to the Secretary.
(c) Disclosure and Correction of Information.–
(1) Disclosure.–With respect to the information about final adverse actions (not including settlements in which no findings of liability have been made) reported to the Secretary under this section with respect to a health care provider, supplier, or practitioner, the Secretary shall, by regulation, provide for–
(A) disclosure of the information, upon request, to the health care provider, supplier, or licensed practitioner, and
(B) procedures in the case of disputed accuracy of the information.
(2) Corrections.–Each Government agency and health plan shall report corrections of information already reported about any final adverse action taken against a health care provider, supplier, or practitioner, in such form and manner that the Secretary prescribes by regulation.
(d) Access to Reported Information.–
(1) Availability.–The information in the database maintained under this section shall be available to Federal and State government agencies and health plans pursuant to procedures that the Secretary shall provide by regulation.
(2) Fees for disclosure.–The Secretary may establish or approve reasonable fees for the disclosure of information in such database (other than with respect to requests by Federal agencies). The amount of such a fee shall be sufficient to recover the full costs of operating the database. Such fees shall be available to the Secretary or, in the Secretary’s discretion to the agency designated under this section to cover such costs.
(e) Protection From Liability for Reporting.–No person or entity, including the agency designated by the Secretary in subsection (b)(5) shall be held liable in any civil action with respect to any report made as required by this section, without knowledge of the falsity of the information contained in the report.
(f) Coordination With National Practitioner Data Bank.–The Secretary shall implement this section in such a manner as to avoid duplication with the reporting requirements established for the National Practitioner Data Bank under the Health Care Quality Improvement Act of 1986 (42 U.S.C. 11101 et seq.).
(g) Definitions and Special Rules.–For purposes of this section:
(1) Final adverse action.–
(A) In general.–The term `final adverse action’ includes:
(i) Civil judgments against a health care provider, supplier, or practitioner in Federal or State court related to the delivery of a health care item or service.
(ii) Federal or State criminal convictions related to the delivery of a health care item or service.
(iii) Actions by Federal or State agencies responsible for the licensing and certification of health care providers, suppliers, and licensed health care practitioners, including–
(I) formal or official actions, such as revocation or suspension of a license (and the length of any such suspension), reprimand, censure or probation,
(II) any other loss of license or the right to apply for, or renew, a license of the provider, supplier, or practitioner, whether by operation of law, voluntary surrender, non-renewability, or otherwise, or
(III) any other negative action or finding by such Federal or State agency that is publicly available information.
(iv) Exclusion from participation in Federal or State health care programs (as defined in sections 1128B(f) and 1128(h), respectively).
(v) Any other adjudicated actions or decisions that the Secretary shall establish by regulation.
(B) Exception.–The term does not include any action with respect to a malpractice claim.
(2) Practitioner.–The terms `licensed health care practitioner’, `licensed practitioner’, and `practitioner’ mean, with respect to a State, an individual who is licensed or otherwise authorized by the State to provide health care services (or any individual who, without authority holds himself or herself out to be so licensed or authorized).
(3) Government agency.–The term `Government agency’ shall include:
(A) The Department of Justice.
(B) The Department of Health and Human Services.
(C) Any other Federal agency that either administers or provides payment for the delivery of health care services, including, but not limited to the Department of Defense and the Veterans’ Administration.
(D) State law enforcement agencies.
(E) State medicaid fraud control units.
(F) Federal or State agencies responsible for the licensing and certification of health care providers and licensed health care practitioners.
(4) Health plan.–The term `health plan’ has the meaning given such term by section 1128C(c).
(5) Determination of conviction.–For purposes of paragraph (1), the existence of a conviction shall be determined under paragraph (4) of section 1128(i).
(b) Improved Prevention in Issuance of Medicare Provider Numbers.– Section 1842(r) (42 U.S.C. 1395u(r)) is amended by adding at the end the following new sentence: `Under such system, the Secretary may impose appropriate fees on such physicians to cover the costs of investigation and recertification activities with respect to the issuance of the identifiers.’.