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Archive for the ‘governance’ Category

CRS — Conflict Minerals and Resource Extraction: Dodd-Frank, SEC Regulations, and Legal Challenges (October 15, 2014)

October 20, 2014 Comments off

Conflict Minerals and Resource Extraction: Dodd-Frank, SEC Regulations, and Legal Challenges (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

Two sections of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Protection Act (Dodd-Frank) require that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or Commission) issue regulations to make public the involvement of U.S. companies in conflict minerals and in resource extraction payments. Supporters of the Dodd-Frank conflict minerals statute and the SEC implementing rule believe that such disclosures could have an impact on the amount of violence involved with the mining of conflict minerals. Opponents of the statute and rule argue that they require disclosures that are arbitrary and capricious and that some of the required disclosures violate the First Amendment guarantee of freedom of speech. Supporters of the resource extraction statute and the SEC implementing rule believe that they are needed to achieve the goal of the transparency of payments made by resource extraction issuers to governments in order to foster reform and anticorruption and to improve the tax collection process. Opponents believe that they are arbitrary and capricious and violate the First Amendment. Legal challenges to the statutes and regulations have occurred, based primarily on administrative law and First Amendment grounds.

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Getting to the Route of It: The Role of Governance in Regional Transit

October 16, 2014 Comments off

Getting to the Route of It: The Role of Governance in Regional Transit
Source: Eno Center for Transportation

Metropolitan regions are the economic engines of our nation and public transit is the machinery that enables the largest metropolitan areas to function, compete effectively for employers and labor, and foster innovation. The ability of transit organizations to respond to changing and expanding demands varies across the industry and is shaped to a large extent by individual governance and organizational structures. Each type of governance structure has its own implications for funding, equitable and effective service patterns, and economic growth.

Gym Memberships, Gift Cards, and Hair Salons: Examining the Misuse of Government-Supplied Credit Cards (Hearing)

October 15, 2014 Comments off

Gym Memberships, Gift Cards, and Hair Salons: Examining the Misuse of Government-Supplied Credit Cards
Source: U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight & Government Reform

Witness and Testimony Documents
Ms. Anne Richards
Assistant Inspector General for Audits
Office of the Inspector General, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Ms. Janet Kasper
Director, Contracts and Assistance Agreement Audits,
Office of Inspector General, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Mr. Elliot Lewis
Assistant Inspector General for Audits
Office of Inspector General, U.S. Department of Labor

Mr. John Lyle
Deputy Assistant Secretary (Contracting)
U.S. Air Force

Mr. H.L. Larry
Deputy Director of Air Force Services
U.S. Air Force

How Should Health Data Be Used? Privacy, Secondary Use, and Big Data Sales

October 15, 2014 Comments off

How Should Health Data Be Used? Privacy, Secondary Use, and Big Data Sales
Source: Yale Institute for Social and Policy Studies

Electronic health records, data sharing, big data, data mining, and secondary use are enabling exciting opportunities for improving health and health care while also exacerbating privacy concerns. Two court cases about selling prescription data raise questions of what constitutes “privacy” and “public interest;” they present opportunity for ethical analysis of data privacy, commodifying data for sale and ownership, combining public and private data, data for research, and transparency and consent. These interwoven issues involve discussion of big data benefits and harms, and touch on common dualities of the individual v. the aggregate or the public interest, research (or, more broadly, innovation) v. privacy, individual v. institutional power, identification v. identity and authentication, and virtual v. real individuals and contextualized information. Transparency and accountability are needed for assessing appropriate, judicious, and ethical data use and users, as some are more compatible with societal norms and values than others.

Medical Device Registries: Recommendations for Advancing Safety and Public Health

October 14, 2014 Comments off

Medical Device Registries: Recommendations for Advancing Safety and Public Health
Source: Pew Charitable Trusts

In 2012, FDA issued a report, “Strengthening Our National System for Medical Device Postmarket Surveillance,” outlining four key steps for creating a national surveillance system that would quickly identify poorly performing medical devices. One step was to encourage the development of national and international device registries, which contain information on patients who use or are treated with a specific device.

In response to FDA’s report, The Pew Charitable Trusts, the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, and the Medical Device Epidemiological Network (MDEpiNet) Science Infrastructure Center at Weill Cornell Medical College partnered to develop a set of recommendations—which emerged from several multistakeholder convenings of practitioners, regulators, payers, patients, and industry—on the use of registries to improve patient safety.

The report outlines five objectives for stakeholders to work toward so that medical device registries can better contribute to the national surveillance system, including:

  • Establishing criteria for determining if a device registry is the appropriate tool for postmarket surveillance;
  • Ensuring registry data—as well as information about a registry’s governance and financing—are publicly available;
  • Implementing efficiencies that can help streamline registry data collection and reduce the time and cost of reporting;
  • Leveraging registry data to accelerate medical device innovation and help fulfill related regulatory responsibilities; and
  • Resolving varying legal interpretations of provisions governing quality improvement activities and research, as they apply to registries.

The National Coalition on Health Care Releases Inaugural Congressional Report Card: 113th Congress Fails to Make the Grade on Health Care Costs

October 13, 2014 Comments off

The National Coalition on Health Care Releases Inaugural Congressional Report Card: 113th Congress Fails to Make the Grade on Health Care Costs
Source: National Coalition on Health Care

Today, the National Coalition on Health Care (NCHC) released “Health Costs and the American Family: A Report Card on the 113th Congress,” finding that despite strong bipartisan efforts, this Congress has yet to make the grade in curbing health care costs.

The seven-page report card grades actions taken by the 113 Congress in three areas of health policy where common-ground, bipartisan solutions were possible: modernizing physician payment and SGR repeal, price and quality transparency, and strengthening Medicare. The report card concludes that Congress has so far failed to make meaningful progress toward greater health care affordability.

A time for stress: The challenges facing Europe’s banks

October 10, 2014 Comments off

A time for stress: The challenges facing Europe’s banks (PDF)
Source: McKinsey & Company

In November the European Central Bank (ECB) will officially take overall responsibility for the supervision of major European banks under the Single Supervisory Mechanism. This is one of the biggest structural changes in the financial-services regulatory environment in the past 30 years. Europe’s banks are facing tough new minimum that they need to make some major changes.

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