COVID-19 served as a major pivot event for the adoption of virtual healthcare solutions. As stay-at-home orders swept the country and the pandemic forced physical isolation, telehealth tools were rapidly rolled out to safely provide necessary services. The reality on the ground forced overnight adoption of virtual care services that otherwise likely would have plodded along for decades.
As teleworking evolves from necessity to norm, companies with long-term remote workers abroad are facing the expiration of countries’ taxation grace periods—offered at the start of the novel coronavirus pandemic—and, in their place, potentially nebulous cross-border tax complications.
In a recent article for Law360, McDermott partner David Noren discusses employer tax considerations related to remote workforces.
Political divisiveness on Capitol Hill, a focus on impeachment activity and financial relief for the COVID-19 pandemic—as well as delays in confirming President Joe Biden’s nominees for cabinet and subcabinet positions—so far have caused a slowdown in the new administration’s ability to make sweeping changes affecting healthcare.
In an article for Pharmacy Practice News, McDermott partner James Kim discusses key issues to watch from Congress and the White House in 2021.
On February 18, 2021, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued clarifying guidance on the temporary special rules for health flexible spending arrangements (FSAs) and dependent care assistance programs (DCAPs). This provides welcome guidance regarding the application of cafeteria plan relief provided by the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA).
The challenges of the past year have underscored the importance of life sciences to a dramatic degree. With countries worldwide now distributing vaccines that were developed in record time, COVID-19 has also made plain the value of investing in technological and scientific solutions that can reshape the world and improve health outcomes.
The pandemic has particularly accelerated investments in the digital health space, as a significant share of everyday life has migrated to computer screens by necessity. So what does this mean for the sector going forward?
Writing for MPO Magazine, McDermott partner Steve Bernstein shares five themes to watch in the digital health sector, including what life sciences developers and investors should know about the current deal-making landscape.
On March 10, 2021, US Congress finalized and passed the American Rescue Plan of 2021 (ARPA), the latest COVID-19 relief package that largely tracks President Joe Biden’s initial $1.9 trillion proposal. The ARPA extends unemployment insurance benefits and provides direct $1,400 stimulus payments to qualifying Americans, but it also makes several important health policy-related changes. These include providing funding for vaccine distribution and testing to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, making policy adjustments to the Medicaid program, facilitating health insurance coverage and providing more money for healthcare providers. The final bill also makes two narrowly focused technical Medicare payment changes.
This summary highlights notable health policy provisions of the final bill.
A recent poll in the United Kingdom revealed there was a high level of support among managers for making COVID-19 vaccines mandatory for staff returning to work, with half of the respondents believing office access should be restricted for those who refused to get a vaccination on non-medical grounds. But what are the legal, ethical and privacy issues of such measures?
In an interview for BBC World News, McDermott partner Carole Spink discussed employer-related vaccine considerations.
On March 19, 2021, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed SB 95, significantly expanding California’s COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave (CSPSL). This latest legislation now requires any California employer with more than 25 employees to provide CSPSL in addition to regular paid sick leave offered.
Effective March 12, 2021, all New York State employers are required to provide employees with paid time off (PTO) to receive a COVID-19 vaccine at the employee’s regular rate of pay.
Known as SB 973, the law requiring California employers with more than 100 nationwide employees to submit certain wage information to the state was signed into law in September with the first annual reporting deadline set for March 31. Businesses covered by the law must submit W-2 wage information and hours worked for their California employees according to sex, race, ethnicity and job category within 12 specified pay bands.
In a recent article in Law360, McDermott partner Elvira Kras and others discuss five questions being asked about the Golden State’s new pay data reporting mandate.