Bill to limit Stark Law penalties reintroduced in U.S. House

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 - Congress, House, Senate

Last month, U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany (R-LA) and Ron Kind (D-WI) re-introduced the Stark Administrative Simplification Act (HR 776), which aims to rein in the penalties that can be enforced against self-referral under the Stark Law.

Violations of the Stark Law for having an unwritten, unsigned or lapsed agreement that is otherwise compliant with federal laws would have penalties capped at $5,000 if the violation is disclosed within one year. Penalties would be limited to $10,000 if a violation is disclosed more than one year from the date of noncompliance. The bill’s sponsors also say the legislation would streamline the process for disclosure and resolution.

Self-referrals have been a hot topic within radiology as imaging services continue to be scrutinized for appropriate utilization.

Analysts have suggested HR 776 could generate up to $1 billion in new revenue over a 10-year period, according to a statement from Boustany. The bill is currently in committee awaiting consideration before the U.S. House.