Physicians and other Part B providers should be aware that the Office of Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services has released its Work Plan for Fiscal year 2011. The Work Plan describes those area the OIG intends to review in the coming fiscal year and is a key tool for determining what “risk areas” to focus on from a compliance standpoint. A partial list of the Part B review areas in the 2011 Work Plan is as follows:

Place‐of‐Service Errors. Will review physician coding of place of service on Medicare Part B claims for services performed in ambulatory surgical centers (ASC) and hospital outpatient departments.

Coding of Evaluation and Management Services. Will review evaluation and management (E&M) claims to identify trends in the coding of E&M services, the extent of potentially inappropriate payments for E&M services and the consistency of E&M medical review determinations, and industry practices related to the number of E&M services provided by physicians and reimbursed as part of the global surgery fee.

Medicare Payments for Part B Imaging Services. Will review Medicare payments for Part B imaging services focusing on the practice expense components to determine whether Medicare payments reflect the expenses incurred and whether the utilization rates reflect industry practices.

Billing of Portable X‐Ray Suppliers. Will review providers of portable x‐ray services with unusual claims patterns and identify Medicare claims that are questionable.

Questionable Billing for Medicare Outpatient Therapy Services. Will review paid claims data for Medicare outpatient therapy services from 2009 and identify questionable billing patterns.

Appropriateness of Medicare Payments for Polysomnography. Will review the appropriateness of Medicare payments for sleep studies.

Excessive Payments for Diagnostic Tests. Will review Medicare payments for high‐cost diagnostic tests to determine whether they were medically necessary.

Independent Diagnostic Testing Facilities’ Compliance With Medicare Standards. Will review selected IDTFs enrolled in Medicare to determine the extent to which they comply with selected Medicare standards.

More information on the Work Plan can be found here.