Inducement Threshold Updated by OIG

Inducement Threshold Updated by OIG

The Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a policy statement December 7 increasing what constitutes a gift of “nominal value” to Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries for purposes of avoiding civil monetary penalties.
Under Section 1128A(a)(5) of the Social Security Act, enacted as part of HIPAA:

a person who offers or transfers to a Medicare or Medicaid beneficiary any remuneration that the person knows or should know is likely to influence the beneficiary’s selection of a particular provider, practitioner, or supplier of Medicare or Medicaid payable items or services may be liable for civil monetary penalties (CMPs) of up to $10,000 for each wrongful act.

In 2000, OIG interpreted the terms “inexpensive” or “nominal value” to mean a retail value of no more than $10 per item, or $50 in the aggregate per patient, on an annual basis. As of December 7, “nominal value” has be re-defined as having a retail value of no more than $15 per item or $75 in the aggregate per patient, on an annual basis. Such remuneration cannot include cash or items similar to cash, such as gift cards.

Michael Miscoe
Latest posts by Michael Miscoe (see all)

About Has 54 Posts

Mr. Miscoe, JD, CPC, CASCC, CUC, CCPC, CPCO, CPMA has over 20 years of experience in healthcare coding and over sixteen years as a compliance expert, forensic coding expert and consultant. He has provided expert analysis and testimony on a wide range of coding and compliance issues in civil and criminal cases and his law practice concentrates exclusively on representation of healthcare providers in post-payment audits as well as with responding to HIPAA OCR issues. He has an extensive national speaking background and has been published in numerous national publications on a variety of coding, compliance and health law topics.

Comments are closed.