HCN News & Notes

Healthcare Compliance Post-ACA Poses Challenges, Opportunities

CHICAGO — Prior to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), chief compliance officers say their role in their healthcare organizations was fairly straightforward. But now they must deal with broad and unprecedented regulatory changes and have a hand in quality initiatives throughout the organization.

The good news is that it has elevated the position of the chief compliance officer, or CCO, within the organization. The bad news is that compliance has become such an ever-growing component of quality that incorporating quality into compliance can be a tedious exercise, according to one chief compliance officer interviewed by FierceHealthcare for a special report that examines the changing role of compliance due to healthcare reform.

“The biggest challenge of ACA compliance is the intensity of the regulation expectations, how these need to be implemented across the entity and how many disciplines it now needs to incorporate,” Regina Gurvich, CCO at New York’s Advantage Care Physicians, a multi-specialty physician practice, told FierceHealthcare in an exclusive interview.

While the ACA has had a profound effect on the compliance process, she says it has also transformed the position of the CCO. “I think every new regulation legitimizes the position more and more,” Gurvich said. “If you look at historical perspective, compliance officers are still not fully there, so [post-ACA] it’s legitimized; it raised the expectations of skill sets.”