The latest anti-healthcare bill lie is……

That Section 163 will make your health records open to the public….. which is….. total bull once again… go figure. Here’s the text involved:



(1) IN GENERAL.—Part C of title XI of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1320d et seq.) is amended by inserting after section 1173 the following new section:



(1) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary shall adopt and regularly update standards consistent with the goals described in paragraph (2).

(2) GOALS FOR FINANCIAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE TRANSACTIONS.—The goals for standards under paragraph (1) are that such standards shall—

(A) be unique with no conflicting or redundant standards;
(B) be authoritative, permitting no additions or constraints for electronic transactions, including companion guides;
(C) be comprehensive, efficient and robust, requiring minimal augmentation by paper transactions or clarification by further communications;
(D) enable the real-time (or near real time) determination of an individual’s financial responsibility at the point of service and, to the extent possible, prior to service, including whether the individual is eligible for a specific service with a specific physician at a specific facility, which may include utilization of a machine-readable health plan beneficiary identification card;
(E) enable, where feasible, near real-time adjudication of claims;
(F) provide for timely acknowledgment, response, and status reporting applicable to any electronic transaction deemed appropriate by the Secretary;
(G) describe all data elements (such as reason and remark codes) in unambiguous terms, not permit optional fields, require that data elements be either required or conditioned upon set values in other fields, and prohibit additional conditions; and
(H) harmonize all common data elements across administrative and clinical transaction standards.

(3) TIME FOR ADOPTION.—Not later than 5 years after the date of implementation of the X12 Version 5010 transaction standards implemented under this part, the Secretary shall adopt standards under this section.

(4) REQUIREMENTS FOR SPECIFIC STANDARDS.—The standards under this section shall be developed, adopted and enforced so as to—
(A) clarify, refine, complete, and expand, as needed, the standards required under section 1173;
(B) require paper versions of standardized transactions to comply with the same standards as to data content such that a fully compliant, equivalent electronic transaction can be populated from the data from a paper version;
(C) enable electronic funds transfers, in order to allow automated reconciliation with the related health care payment and remittance advice;
(D) require timely and transparent claim and denial management processes, including tracking, adjudication, and appeal processing;
(E) require the use of a standard electronic transaction with which health care providers may quickly and efficiently enroll with a health plan to conduct the other electronic transactions provided for in this part; and
(F) provide for other requirements relating to administrative simplification as identified by the Secretary, in consultation with stakeholders.

(5) BUILDING ON EXISTING STANDARDS.—In developing the standards under this section, the Secretary shall build upon existing and planned standards.

(6) IMPLEMENTATION AND ENFORCEMENT.—Not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this section, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a plan for the implementation and enforcement, by not later than 5 years after such date of enactment, of the standards under this section. Such plan shall include—
(A) a process and timeframe with milestones for developing the complete set of standards;
(B) an expedited upgrade program for continually developing and approving additions and modifications to the standards as often as annually to improve their quality and extend their functionality to meet evolving requirements in health care;
(C) programs to provide incentives for, and ease the burden of, implementation for certain health care providers, with special consideration given to such providers serving rural or underserved areas and ensure coordination with standards, implementation specifications, and certification criteria being adopted under the HITECH Act;
(D) programs to provide incentives for, and ease the burden of, health care providers who volunteer to participate in the process of setting standards for electronic transactions;
(E) an estimate of total funds needed to ensure timely completion of the implementation plan; and
(F) an enforcement process that includes timely investigation of complaints, random audits to ensure compliance, civil monetary and programmatic penalties for non-compliance consistent with existing laws and regulations, and a fair and reasonable appeals process building off of enforcement provisions under this part.

(b) LIMITATIONS ON USE OF DATA.—Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit the use of information collected under this section in a manner that would adversely affect any individual.

(c) PROTECTION OF DATA.—The Secretary shall ensure (through the promulgation of regulations or otherwise) that all data collected pursuant to subsection (a) are—
(1) used and disclosed in a manner that meets the HIPAA privacy and security law (as defined in section 3009(a)(2) of the Public Health Service 19 Act), including any privacy or security standard adopted under section 3004 of such Act; and
(2) protected from all inappropriate internal use by any entity that collects, stores, or receives the data, including use of such data in determinations of eligibility (or continued eligibility) in health plans, and from other inappropriate uses, as defined by the Secretary.’’.

(2) DEFINITIONS.—Section 1171 of such Act 4 (42 U.S.C. 1320d) is amended—

(A) in paragraph (7), by striking ‘‘with reference to’’ and all that follows and inserting ‘‘with reference to a transaction or data element of health information in section 1173 means implementation specifications, certification criteria, operating rules, messaging for mats, codes, and code sets adopted or established by the Secretary for the electronic exchange and use of information’’; and
(B) by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

       (9) OPERATING RULES.—The term ‘operating rules’ means business rules for using and processing transactions. Operating rules should address the following:
(A) Requirements for data content using available and established national standards.
(B) Infrastructure requirements that establish best practices for streamlining data flow to yield timely execution of transactions.
(C) Policies defining the transaction related rights and responsibilities for entities that are transmitting or receiving data.’’.

(3) CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—Section 1179(a) of such Act (42 U.S.C. 1320d–8(a)) is amended, in the matter before paragraph (1)—7 (A) by inserting ‘‘on behalf of an individual’’ after ‘‘1978)’’; and (B) by inserting ‘‘on behalf of an individual’’ after ‘‘for a financial institution’’ and 11 (b) STANDARDS FOR CLAIMS ATTACHMENTS AND 12 COORDINATION OF BENEFITS .—
(1) STANDARD FOR HEALTH CLAIMS ATTACHMENTS.—Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall promulgate a final rule to establish a standard for health claims attachment transaction described in section 1173(a)(2)(B) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1320d-2(a)(2)(B)) and coordination of benefits.
(A) IN GENERAL.—Section 1179 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1320d–8) is 25 amended, in the matter before paragraph (1)—
(i) by striking ‘‘or is engaged’’ and inserting ‘‘and is engaged’’; and
(ii) by inserting ‘‘(other than as a business associate for a covered entity)’’
after ‘‘for a financial institution’’.
(B) EFFECTIVE DATE.—The amendments made by paragraph (1) shall apply to transactions occurring on or after such date (not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act) as the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall specify.

I have copied the text above from and removed the line breaks and line numbering and indented the paragraphs to make subsections more clear… no other modifications have been made to the text. Please refer to the text of the bill itself for any more information…. instead of letting others misinform you about what’s really there.

WOW…. Someone said it really, really well….

If you haven’t seen this piece, it’s well worth a read…

Republicans Religion and the Triumph of Unreason