A blog by attorneys for anyone interested in or affected by The Sunshine Act.

Registration for Review, Dispute and Correction Hits Snag

August 7, 2014
Ruselle W. Robinson

Earlier this week, the online publication ProPublica reported that CMS had temporarily suspended the review and dispute phase of Open Payments, which began on July 14, 2014.  According to the article, in at least one instance a manufacturer submitted incorrect payment information after confusing two physicians with the same name and attributing payments to the wrong physician.  You can read the ProPublica article here:  http://www.propublica.org/article/glitch-prompts-temporary-shutdown-of-pharma-payment-verification-system

CMS today confirmed that it has taken the Open Payments system offline for the purpose of “investigating a reported issue”.  Physicians and teaching hospitals can still complete the first phase of registering in the CMS Enterprise Portal (see my post of July 14, 2014 for a more detailed explanation of the registration process).  However, physicians and teaching hospitals will not be able to review and dispute payment and physician ownership data reported about them by applicable manufacturers and applicable group purchasing organizations.

CMS will adjust the review and dispute deadline (currently scheduled to end August 27, 2014) and the corrections period deadline (scheduled to end September 11, 2014) for each day the Open Payments system is offline.

You can contact the Open Payments Help Desk with your questions at openpayments@cms.hhs.gov or call 1-855-326-8366, M-F, 7:30 am to 6:30 pm (CT).

I will provide an update on this developing story as soon as additional information is available.

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