The federal government's healthcare fraud probes and the future of the Medicare program will take center stage at the American Hospital Association's annual membership meeting Jan. 31 through Feb. 3 in Washington.
This year's symposium on federal relations features former U.S. Attorney Joseph diGenova speaking on healthcare fraud. The AHA hired DiGenova last year to assist it in rebuffing federal fraud investigations. At the Feb. 2 symposium, he's slated to discuss what the AHA says is the government's inappropriate use of the federal False Claims Act in probes of hospital billings.
On the other side of the argument will be Rep. Pete Stark (D-Calif.), who has been an adamant healthcare watchdog. Joining Stark will be Nancy-Ann Min DeParle, speaking before the AHA for the first time in her new role as HCFA administrator.
Also present will be members of Congress, including Rep. William Thomas (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Ways and Means health subcommittee, and Sen. Robert Kerrey (D-Neb.), an appointee to the National Bipartisan Commission on the Future of Medicare.
DiGenova's speech is one of many indications that the federal government's crackdown on Medicare fraud is a top concern of hospital leaders.
His speech will follow a trustee educational session on restoring public trust by using a model corporate compliance program developed by the AHA to respond to fraud and abuse probes. The session will be held Feb. 1.
Other key events include:
An open forum for hospital trustees sponsored by the Committee on Governance, which the AHA board of trustees established to add the governance perspective to AHA policymaking.
A luncheon Feb. 1 for members of the AHA political action committee's Capitol Club and Chairman's Circle. Members of the Chairman's Circle also will be feted with a reception Feb. 2.
Speeches by American Red Cross President Elizabeth Dole at the AHA's awards recognition luncheon Feb. 2 and by former U.S. Sen. Mark Hatfield (R-Ore.) at the Roger Larson Memorial Lecture and Luncheon, also Feb. 2.
For more information, visit the AHA's World Wide Web site at http: www.aha.org or call 800-442-8661.