The Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the Supreme Court decision upholding its constitutionality will have an immediate and lasting impact on every player in the health care world and on every employer in the United States. Covington is uniquely qualified to help clients chart and navigate this evolving landscape. We have many years of experience advising clients across the entire spectrum of the health care industry, including pharmaceutical and device manufacturers, state Medicaid programs and other governmental health programs, and employer group health plans. Independent surveys have repeatedly recognized our life sciences and employee benefits practices as among the best in the nation.
Covington’s team approach to legal practice is particularly well-suited to navigating the complex issues presented by ACA, which cut across many industries and legal disciplines. Our ACA team has been advising affected parties on a wide variety of health reform issues. For example, we have been working closely with clients on issues relating to:
- accountable care organizations
- annual pharma fees
- comparative effectiveness
- establishment of exchanges
- fraud and abuse
- Medicaid Drug Rebate Program
- Medicaid expansion
- Medicaid/exchange integration
- medical device fees
- Part D coverage gap
- Sunshine Act
Our cross-disciplinary team includes lawyers who have served on the congressional committees and in the federal agencies that will shape health law for years to come. For example, members of our health reform team have served as Deputy General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS); Chief Counsel of the Food and Drug Administration; Deputy Secretary of Labor; Solicitor of Labor; Associate Benefits Tax Counsel in the Treasury Department; Chief Labor & Pensions Counsel for the Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee; and Chief Counsel to the Senate Finance Committee.
Please use the links below to view practice descriptions, agency guidance, and client advisories for practice areas affected by health reform.
- ACA Supreme Court Litigation - Since the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, Covington has been helping clients understand the statute, analyze and comment on hundreds of proposed rules, and monitor the litigation challenging some of its provisions. When the cases reached the Supreme Court, we were honored that the Court appointed one of our partners, Robert Long, to brief and argue one of the issues in the case. In the aftermath of the decision, which affects not only the health care and life sciences industries, but also virtually every employer, we are working with clients to assess the impact of the decision, to engage in the regulatory process at key agencies and the legislative process on the Hill, and to take steps to overcome the challenges and seize the opportunities created by the ACA.
- Health Care Industry - Covington advises and represents pharmaceutical manufacturers, device manufacturers, and health care providers on issues involving reimbursement in the Medicare and Medicaid programs and issues of health information privacy. Our broad practice and deep-rooted understanding of the structure and operations of federal and state reimbursement programs enable us to develop workable solutions to complex problems and to assist our clients in developing strategies that provide a competitive advantage, minimize risk, and optimize opportunities. Whether we are providing advice, working with legislators, or negotiating with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”), we have the knowledge, skills, and expertise to assist clients with the intricacies of Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement.
- Employee Benefits - Covington has one of the country’s leading employee benefits and executive compensation practices. We represent public companies and governmental employers that provide health benefits to hundreds of thousands of active and retired workers. We are working closely with our clients on a wide array of issues that affect their group health plans and their relationships with health care providers, vendors, and administrators. Our lawyers are directly involved in ongoing efforts to shape the interpretation and application of the new health reform provisions and other recent laws affecting employer group health plans.
- Federal-State Programs - For more than 40 years, Covington has counseled state and local governments on the statutes, regulations, and federal policies affecting the administration of Medicaid. Since ACA’s enactment, we have worked closely with a number of States on issues related to the Medicaid expansion, the establishment of health insurance exchanges, and Medicaid-exchange integration.
- Food & Drug - Our Food and Drug Practice covers the entire spectrum of products regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and related agencies, including pharmaceuticals, biologics, medical devices, food, cosmetics, tobacco products, and animal drugs. Our practice includes representation before FDA and litigation at all levels in the federal courts. In addition, the firm has represented numerous clients in state food and drug law matters. In addition to representing individual companies, the firm has served as general counsel or principal outside counsel to over 20 trade associations in the food and drug area and related fields, including the Grocery Manufacturers of America and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA).
- Government Affairs - The health care industry is characterized by dynamic growth and enormous complexity. Success in this sector requires a mastery of the regulatory environment and the political and legislative landscape. In collaboration with our extensive practices in other areas, our Public Policy and Government Affairs practice provides health care clients (whether as an private employer, a state or other governmental entity, or a health industry entity) with an interdisciplinary, strategic approach to the most complex and politically charged coverage, reimbursement and compliance issues.