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e-CFR data is current as of July 1, 2020

Title 45Subtitle ASubchapter APart 60 → Subpart A


Title 45: Public Welfare
PART 60—NATIONAL PRACTITIONER DATA BANK


Subpart A—General Provisions


Contents
§60.1   The National Practitioner Data Bank.
§60.2   Applicability.
§60.3   Definitions.

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§60.1   The National Practitioner Data Bank.

The Health Care Quality Improvement Act of 1986 (HCQIA), as amended, title IV of Public Law 99-660 (42 U.S.C. 11101 et seq.) (hereinafter referred to as “title IV”), authorizes the Secretary to establish (either directly or by contract) a National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB) to collect and release certain information relating to the professional competence and conduct of physicians, dentists, and other health care practitioners. Section 1921 of the Social Security Act (hereinafter referred to as “section 1921”), as amended, (42 U.S.C. 1396r-2) expanded the requirements under the NPDB and requires each state to adopt a system of reporting to the Secretary adverse licensure or certification actions taken against health care practitioners, health care entities, providers, and suppliers, as well as certain final adverse actions taken by state law and fraud enforcement agencies against health care practitioners, providers, and suppliers. Section 1128E of the Social Security Act (hereinafter referred to as “section 1128E”), as amended, (42 U.S.C. 1320a-7e) authorizes the Secretary to implement a national healthcare fraud and abuse data collection program for the reporting and disclosing of certain final adverse actions taken by Federal Government agencies and health plans against health care practitioners, providers, and suppliers. Information from section 1921 and section 1128E is to be reported and distributed through the NPDB. The regulations in this part set forth the reporting and disclosure requirements for the NPDB, as well as procedures to dispute the accuracy of information contained in the NPDB.

[78 FR 20484, Apr. 5, 2013, 78 FR 25860, May 6, 2013]

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§60.2   Applicability.

The regulations in this part establish reporting requirements applicable to hospitals, health care entities, Boards of Medical Examiners, and professional societies of health care practitioners which take adverse licensure or professional review actions; state licensing or certification authorities, peer review organizations, and private accreditation entities that take licensure or certification actions or negative actions or findings against health care practitioners, health care entities, providers, or suppliers; entities (including insurance companies) making payments as a result of medical malpractice actions or claims; and Federal government agencies, state law and fraud enforcement agencies and health plans that take final adverse actions against health care practitioners, providers, and suppliers. They also establish procedures to enable individuals or entities to obtain information from the NPDB or to dispute the accuracy of NPDB information.

[78 FR 20484, Apr. 5, 2013, 78 FR 25860, May 6, 2013]

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§60.3   Definitions.

Adversely affecting means reducing, restricting, suspending, revoking, or denying clinical privileges or membership in a health care entity.

Affiliated or associated refers to health care entities with which a subject of a final adverse action has a business or professional relationship. This includes, but is not limited to, organizations, associations, corporations, or partnerships. This also includes a professional corporation or other business entity composed of a single individual.

Board of Medical Examiners, or Board, means a body or subdivision of such body which is designated by a state for the purpose of licensing, monitoring, and disciplining physicians or dentists. This term includes a Board of Osteopathic Examiners or its subdivision, a Board of Dentistry or its subdivision, or an equivalent body as determined by the state. Where the Secretary, pursuant to section 423(c)(2) of the HCQIA (42 U.S.C. 11112(c)), has designated an alternate entity to carry out the reporting activities of §60.12 of this part due to a Board's failure to comply with §60.8 of this part, the term Board of Medical Examiners or Board refers to this alternate entity.

Civil judgment means a court-ordered action rendered in a Federal or state court proceeding, other than a criminal proceeding. This reporting requirement does not include Consent Judgments that have been agreed upon and entered to provide security for civil settlements in which there was no finding or admission of liability.

Clinical privileges means the authorization by a health care entity to a health care practitioner for the provision of health care services, including privileges and membership on the medical staff.

Criminal conviction means a conviction as described in section 1128(i) of the Social Security Act.

Dentist means a doctor of dental surgery, doctor of dental medicine, or the equivalent who is legally authorized to practice dentistry by a state (or who, without authority, holds himself or herself out to be so authorized).

Exclusion means a temporary or permanent debarment of an individual or entity from participation in any Federal or state health-related program, in accordance with which items or services furnished by such person or entity will not be reimbursed under any Federal or state health-related program.

Federal Government agency includes, but is not limited to:

(1) The U.S. Department of Justice;

(2) The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services;

(3) Federal law enforcement agencies, including law enforcement investigators;

(4) Any other Federal agency that either administers or provides payment for the delivery of health care services, including, but not limited to the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs; and

(5) Federal agencies responsible for the licensing and certification of health care practitioners, providers, and suppliers.

Formal peer review process means the conduct of professional review activities through formally adopted written procedures which provide for adequate notice and an opportunity for a hearing.

Formal proceeding means a proceeding held before a state licensing or certification authority, peer review organization, or private accreditation entity that maintains defined rules, policies, or procedures for such a proceeding.

Health care entity means, for purposes of this part:

(1) A hospital;

(2) An entity that provides health care services, and engages in professional review activity through a formal peer review process for the purpose of furthering quality health care, or a committee of that entity; or

(3) A professional society or a committee or agent thereof, including those at the national, state, or local level, of health care practitioners that engages in professional review activity through a formal peer review process, for the purpose of furthering quality health care.

(4) For purposes of paragraph (2) of this definition, an entity includes: a health maintenance organization which is licensed by a state or determined to be qualified as such by the Department of Health and Human Services; and any group or prepaid medical or dental practice which meets the criteria of paragraph (2).

Health care practitioner, licensed health care practitioner, licensed practitioner, or practitioner means an individual who is licensed or otherwise authorized by a state to provide health care services (or any individual who, without authority, holds himself or herself out to be so licensed or authorized).

Health care provider means, for purposes of this part, a provider of services as defined in section 1861(u) of the Social Security Act; any organization (including a health maintenance organization, preferred provider organization or group medical practice) that provides health care services and follows a formal peer review process for the purpose of furthering quality health care, and any other organization that, directly or through contracts, provides health care services.

Health care supplier means, for purposes of this part, a provider of medical and other health care services as described in section 1861(s) of the Social Security Act; or any individual or entity, other than a provider, who furnishes, whether directly or indirectly, or provides access to, health care services, supplies, items, or ancillary services (including, but not limited to, durable medical equipment suppliers, manufacturers of health care items, pharmaceutical suppliers and manufacturers, health record services [such as medical, dental, and patient records], health data suppliers, and billing and transportation service suppliers). The term also includes any individual or entity under contract to provide such supplies, items, or ancillary services; health plans as defined in this section (including employers that are self-insured); and health insurance producers (including but not limited to agents, brokers, solicitors, consultants, and reinsurance intermediaries).

Health plan means, for purposes of this part, a plan, program or organization that provides health benefits, whether directly, through insurance, reimbursement or otherwise, and includes but is not limited to:

(1) A policy of health insurance;

(2) A contract of a service benefit organization;

(3) A membership agreement with a health maintenance organization or other prepaid health plan;

(4) A plan, program, agreement, or other mechanism established, maintained, or made available by a self-insured employer or group of self-insured employers, a health care practitioner, provider, or supplier group, third-party administrator, integrated health care delivery system, employee welfare association, public service group or organization or professional association;

(5) An insurance company, insurance service, or insurance organization that is licensed to engage in the business of selling health care insurance in a state and which is subject to state law which regulates health insurance; and

(6) An organization that provides benefit plans whose coverage is limited to outpatient prescription drugs.

Hospital means, for purposes of this part, an entity described in paragraphs (1) and (7) of section 1861(e) of the Social Security Act.

Medical malpractice action or claim means a written complaint or claim demanding payment based on a health care practitioner's provision of or failure to provide health care services, and includes the filing of a cause of action based on the law of tort, brought in any state or Federal court or other adjudicative body.

Negative action or finding by a Federal or State licensing or certification authority, peer review organization, or private accreditation entity means:

(1) A final determination of denial or termination of an accreditation status from a private accreditation entity that indicates a risk to the safety of a patient(s) or quality of health care services;

(2) Any recommendation by a peer review organization to sanction a health care practitioner; or

(3) Any negative action or finding that, under the state's law, is publicly available information and is rendered by a licensing or certification authority, including but not limited to, limitations on the scope of practice, liquidations, injunctions, and forfeitures. This definition also includes final adverse actions rendered by a Federal or state licensing or certification authority, such as exclusions, revocations, or suspension of license or certification, that occur in conjunction with settlements in which no finding of liability has been made (although such a settlement itself is not reportable under the statute). This definition excludes administrative fines or citations and corrective action plans and other personnel actions, unless they are:

(i) Connected to the delivery of health care services; or

(ii) Taken in conjunction with other adverse licensure or certification actions such as revocation, suspension, censure, reprimand, probation, or surrender.

Organization name means the subject's business or employer at the time the underlying acts occurred. If more than one business or employer is applicable, the one most closely related to the underlying acts should be reported as the “organization name,” with the others being reported as “affiliated or associated health care entities.”

Organization type means a description of the nature of that business or employer.

Other adjudicated actions or decisions means formal or official final actions taken against a health care practitioner, provider, or supplier by a Federal governmental agency, a state law or fraud enforcement agency, or a health plan, which include the availability of a due process mechanism, and are based on acts or omissions that affect or could affect the payment, provision, or delivery of a health care item or service. For example, a formal or official final action taken by a Federal governmental agency, a state law or fraud enforcement agency, or a health plan may include, but is not limited to, a personnel-related action such as suspensions without pay, reductions in pay, reductions in grade for cause, terminations, or other comparable actions. A hallmark of any valid adjudicated action or decision is the availability of a due process mechanism. The fact that the subject elects not to use the due process mechanism provided by the authority bringing the action is immaterial, as long as such a process is available to the subject before the adjudicated action or decision is made final. In general, if an “adjudicated action or decision” follows an agency's established administrative procedures (which ensure that due process is available to the subject of the final adverse action), it would qualify as a reportable action under this definition. This definition specifically excludes clinical privileging actions taken by Federal Government agencies or state law and fraud enforcement agencies and similar paneling decisions made by health plans. This definition does not include overpayment determinations made by Federal or state government programs, their contractors or health plans, and it does not include denial of claims determinations made by Federal Government agencies, state law or fraud enforcement agencies, or health plans. This definition also does not include business or administrative decisions taken by health plans that result in contract terminations unrelated to health care fraud or abuse or quality of care (e.g., when a practitioner's contract is terminated because the practitioner no longer practices at a facility in the health plan's network, or a health plan terminates all provider contracts in a certain geographic area because it ceases business operations in that area). For health plans that are not government entities, an action taken following adequate notice and the opportunity for a hearing that meets the standards of due process set out in section 412(b) of the HCQIA (42 U.S.C. 11112(b)) also would qualify as a reportable action under this definition.

Peer review organization means, for purposes of this part, an organization with the primary purpose of evaluating the quality of patient care practices or services ordered or performed by health care practitioners measured against objective criteria which define acceptable and adequate practice through an evaluation by a sufficient number of health care practitioners in such an area to ensure adequate peer review. The organization has due process mechanisms available to health care practitioners. This definition excludes utilization and quality control peer review organizations described in Part B of Title XI of the Social Security Act (referred to as QIOs) and other organizations funded by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to support the QIO program.

Physician means, for purposes of this part, a doctor of medicine or osteopathy legally authorized to practice medicine or surgery by a state (or who, without authority, holds himself or herself out to be so authorized).

Private accreditation entity means an entity or organization that:

(1) Evaluates and seeks to improve the quality of health care provided by a health care entity, provider, or supplier;

(2) Measures a health care entity's, provider's, or supplier's performance based on a set of standards and assigns a level of accreditation;

(3) Conducts ongoing assessments and periodic reviews of the quality of health care provided by a health care entity, provider, or supplier; and

(4) Has due process mechanisms available to health care entities, providers, or suppliers.

Professional review action means an action or recommendation of a health care entity:

(1) Taken in the course of professional review activity;

(2) Based on the professional competence or professional conduct of an individual health care practitioner which affects or could affect adversely the health or welfare of a patient or patients; and

(3) Which adversely affects or may adversely affect the clinical privileges or membership in a professional society of the health care practitioner.

(4) This term excludes actions which are primarily based on:

(i) The health care practitioner's association, or lack of association, with a professional society or association;

(ii) The health care practitioner's fees or the health care practitioner's advertising or engaging in other competitive acts intended to solicit or retain business;

(iii) The health care practitioner's participation in prepaid group health plans, salaried employment, or any other manner of delivering health services whether on a fee-for-service or other basis;

(iv) A health care practitioner's association with, supervision of, delegation of authority to, support for, training of, or participation in a private group practice with, a member or members of a particular class of health care practitioner or professional; or

(v) Any other matter that does not relate to the competence or professional conduct of a health care practitioner.

Professional review activity means an activity of a health care entity with respect to an individual health care practitioner:

(1) To determine whether the health care practitioner may have clinical privileges with respect to, or membership in, the entity;

(2) To determine the scope or conditions of such privileges or membership; or

(3) To change or modify such privileges or membership.

Quality Improvement Organization means a utilization and quality control peer review organization (as defined in part B of title XI of the Social Security Act) that:

(1)(i) Is composed of a substantial number of the licensed doctors of medicine and osteopathy engaged in the practice of medicine or surgery in the area and who are representative of the practicing physicians in the area, designated by the Secretary under section 1153, with respect to which the entity shall perform services under this part, or

(ii) Has available to it, by arrangement or otherwise, the services of a sufficient number of licensed doctors of medicine or osteopathy engaged in the practice of medicine or surgery in such area to assure that adequate peer review of the services provided by the various medical specialties and subspecialties can be assured;

(2) Is able, in the judgment of the Secretary, to perform review functions required under section 1154 in a manner consistent with the efficient and effective administration of this part and to perform reviews of the pattern of quality of care in an area of medical practice where actual performance is measured against objective criteria which define acceptable and adequate practice; and

(3) Has at least one individual who is a representative of consumers on its governing body.

Secretary means the Secretary of Health and Human Services and any other officer or employee of the Department of Health and Human Services to whom the authority involved has been delegated.

State means the fifty states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Northern Mariana Islands.

State law or fraud enforcement agency includes, but is not limited to:

(1) A state law enforcement agency;

(2) A state Medicaid fraud control unit (as defined in section 1903(q) of the Social Security Act); and

(3) A state agency administering (including those providing payment for services) or supervising the administration of a state health care program (as defined in section 1128(h) of the Social Security Act).

State licensing or certification agency includes, but is not limited to, any authority of a state (or of a political subdivision thereof) responsible for the licensing or certification of health care practitioners (or any peer review organization or private accreditation entity reviewing the services provided by health care practitioners), health care entities, providers, or suppliers. Examples of such state agencies include Departments of Professional Regulation, Health, Social Services (including State Survey and Certification and Medicaid Single State agencies), Commerce, and Insurance.

Voluntary surrender of license or certification means a surrender made after a notification of investigation or a formal official request by a Federal or state licensing or certification authority for a health care practitioner, health care entity, provider, or supplier to surrender the license or certification (including certification agreements or contracts for participation in Federal or state health care programs). The definition also includes those instances where a health care practitioner, health care entity, provider, or supplier voluntarily surrenders a license or certification (including program participation agreements or contracts) in exchange for a decision by the licensing or certification authority to cease an investigation or similar proceeding, or in return for not conducting an investigation or proceeding, or in lieu of a disciplinary action.

[78 FR 20484, Apr. 5, 2013, 78 FR 25860, May 6, 2013]

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