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Bridgette A. Keller

Associate

[email protected]

+1.212.692.6735

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Bridgette applies her experience in health system administration and ethics in health care to her health law practice. Bridgette advises health care providers, ACOs, health plans, PBMs, and laboratories on a variety of regulatory, fraud and abuse, and business planning matters.

With a background in health care operations, Bridgette is able to provide clients with practical insight that includes a focus on the business implications of health care enforcement defense activities, internal investigations, regulatory compliance, and fraud and abuse analyses of proposed new procedures.

Bridgette's work also includes a focus on ethics in health care principles. As a health care ethicist with the Department of Veterans Affairs National Center for Ethics in Health Care (NCEHC), Bridgette provided technical guidance on health care ethics problems to VA stakeholders, VA Central Office staff, and field-based consultants. She also collaborated on the development of an ethics consultation program and educational materials. Prior to her appointment at the NCEHC, Bridgette served as the Outpatient Clinic Coordinator at the Manhattan Campus of the VA New York Harbor Healthcare System and completed the Graduate Health Administration Training Program at the Washington DC VA Medical Center. Her health care management experience includes outpatient clinical operations, customer service, performance improvement, program development and implementation, data analysis, and supervision of staff.

Bridgette is trained in Lean/Six Sigma thinking and as an examiner for the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence.

Education

  • Seton Hall University (JD)
  • Georgetown University (MS)
  • Villanova University (BS)

Involvement

  • Member, American Health Lawyers Association (AHLA)
  • Member, American Bar Association (ABA)
  • Member, American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE)
  • Member, American Society of Bioethics and Humanities (ASBH)

Recent Insights

News & Press

Viewpoints

Viewpoint
GAO recently released a report analyzing the use of pharmacy benefit managers (“PBMs”) and efforts to manage drug spending and use in the Medicare Part D program. Importantly, the report found that use of PBMs reduced Part D spending in 2016 by 20%, from $145 billion to $116 billon, through drug price rebates.
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Earlier this month, CMS issued a final rule aimed at lowering drug prices and reducing out-of-pocket expenses in Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D. This rule is the Administration’s latest effort to address prescription drug prices and builds off the Administration’s Blueprint to Lower Drug Prices and Reduce Out-of-Pocket Costs and arrive on the heels of CMS publishing a rule requiring the disclosure of drug prices in TV ads. Below we’ve provided a brief overview of the major provisions in the final rule, noting changes from the proposed rule that was issued in November 2018.
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Viewpoint General
No one wants to be faced with a large, unexpected medical bill after receiving health care services. Unfortunately, patients often find themselves in this situation after seeking emergency treatment or transportation, undergoing a surgical procedure, or even the birth of a child. These “surprise medical bills” occur when the patient goes to a hospital or facility that is “in-network” with the patient’s health plan, but the physician providing the services is not and is considered “out-of-network” or “OON.” This issue found its way back to the national stage this week, with several important highlights.
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Viewpoint General
Last month, we highlighted a few of the changes CMS proposes in Parts I and II of the Advance Notice and Draft Call Letter. Here, we take a look at CMS’s next steps to combat opioid misuse. CMS is rolling out several new initiatives in this space this year and next.
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Viewpoint General
CMS recently proposed several important changes for the Medicare Advantage (MA) program that relate to payment, benefit design, and new actions to combat the opioid crisis. Here, we take a look at the proposed changes to risk adjustment payments, supplemental benefits, and a value-based insurance design model; all working toward CMS’s goal of maximizing coverage and competition. In a prior post we discussed CMS’s Part D Payment Modernization Model and stay tuned for our upcoming discussion of CMS’s next steps to combat opioid misuse.
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Viewpoint General
Along with most of us, last January DOJ set its own goals for 2018: new policies related to False Claims Act (“FCA”) enforcement. One such “resolution” for 2018 was the DOJ Civil Fraud section’s instruction to its attorneys and all AUSAs handling FCA cases to routinely consider whether declined qui tam actions should be dismissed under the Department’s authority in Section 3730(c)(2)(A) of the FCA, which it had rarely used from 1986 through 2017. Known as the “Granston Memo” (which we discuss here) and now codified in the Justice Manual, the central theme of the instruction is that seeking dismissal of qui tam actions may be in the government’s interest to “preserve limited resources and avoid adverse precedent.” We are now seeing the first evidence of DOJ following through on that resolution.
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Viewpoint General
In its favorable Advisory Opinion 18-11, the OIG explains how a managed care organization’s proposed incentive program to pay network providers to increase the amount of Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) services provided to Medicaid beneficiaries would not violate the Anti-Kickback Statute (AKS).  What is interesting about this Advisory Opinion is that the OIG finds that the health plan’s proposed arrangement would be protected by the managed care safe harbor for eligible managed care organizations (ECMOs), and there are not many opinions addressing this safe harbor.
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Viewpoint General
Medicare Advantage Organizations (MAOs) have been hailing a federal judge’s recent ruling to vacate the 2014 Overpayment Rule. But, how did we get here? And what does it really mean for MAOs?
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News alert for all New Jersey health care providers! A new law went into effect yesterday (August 30, 2018) that changes billing requirements for out-of-network services in New Jersey.
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In this issue, we provide an overview of 46 recently unsealed qui tam cases and take an in-depth look at four of those cases. Two of the featured cases were filed by patients, a rare but growing category of relators, in one instance using supporting data from the CMS Medicare database. In addition, we discuss health care qui tam litigation trends based on filings in the 12-month period that ended on June 30, 2018, including the government’s intervention rate and the percentage of cases filed by customers, business partners, consultants, patients, and other nontraditional relators.
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News & Press

Mintz is advising a consortium of investors led by TPG Capital and Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe in their acquisition of Kindred Healthcare, Inc. The definitive agreement totals approximately $4.1 billion in cash including the assumption or repayment of net debt.