Top counsel for HHS’ inspector general to retire
A longtime leader and an advocate of educating providers on regulatory compliance at the HHS inspector general’s office will retire next month. Lewis Morris, chief counsel for HHS’ inspector general, will step down after advising the office for 25 years. He will be replaced April 1 by veteran official Gregory Demske, assistant inspector general for legal affairs who joined the office in 1990. “Lew Morris has been a tireless guardian of our federal healthcare program for a generation,” Daniel Levinson, HHS’ inspector general, said in an e-mailed statement. “His dedication to program integrity is legendary, and his perseverance in advancing innovative and effective antifraud strategies will benefit Medicare and Medicaid for many years to come.” Morris assisted in healthcare fraud investigations, as well as criminal, civil and administrative prosecutions. His office was charged with deciding whether to exclude healthcare providers found to have engaged in fraudulent activities from participation in federal and state healthcare programs and negotiating corporate integrity agreements used when exclusion was not sought. Morris also led the issuance of compliance program guidance and advisory opinions, and he frequently testified before Congress about the inspector general’s initiatives.
Morris will be step down as chief counsel after 25 years.