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By Matt Phifer
Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has handled health-care cases before, but with American Clinical Laboratory Association v. Azar, her health-care and administrative law expertise will take center stage.
An analysis of data from Bloomberg Law’s Litigation Analytics tool shows that Jackson resolves cases on average more quickly than her fellow judges on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. She is the subject of Bloomberg Law’s inaugural health-care Know Your Judge feature, a recurring article that aims to give readers a closer look at the judges who handle key health-care cases.
Jackson has heard a number of important health-care cases, and reappeared on the health law radar screen in April when she was assigned to hear the American Clinical Laboratory case that had been assigned to Judge Emmet Sullivan. The American Clinical Laboratory Association alleges the Department of Health and Human Services violated Congress’ statutory directives when it issued a final rule limiting the number of laboratories that had to report market information to the HHS. Millions of dollars in reimbursements for clinical laboratories will be on the line.
President Barack Obama nominated Jackson to the federal bench in 2011. Before joining the bench, Jackson worked in private practice at Trout Cacheris and Venable, Baetjer, Howard, and Civiletti in Washington. Before entering private practice, Jackson served as an assistant U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia.
Jackson’s record suggests she is even-handed in her health-care administrative law jurisprudence. She ruled for both providers and the HHS in previous Medicare reimbursement cases she’s heard.
In Florida Health Sci. Ctr. v. Burwell, 89 F. Supp. 3d 121, D.D.C., No. 14-791, 3/31/15, Jackson granted the HHS’s motion to dismiss, finding the Medicare statute did not allow for the review of the HHS’s estimates used to determine the factors considered when calculating Medicare payments and time periods selected by the agency for those purposes.
Jackson denied the HHS’s summary judgment motion in St. Vincent’s Med. Ctr. v. Burwell, 222 F. Supp. 3d 17, 2016 BL 351684, D.D.C., No. 15-1999, 10/21/16, holding that the Provider Reimbursement Review Board could hear an appeal from the medical center. She remanded the case to the agency.
Including cases currently on her docket, Jackson has presided over 22 Medicare cases.
She was most recently in the news when she dismissed former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort’s case against the Department of Justice on April 27. Manafort alleged that then acting Attorney General Rod Rosenstein exceeded his authority when appointing Special Counsel Robert Mueller and that the special counsel exceeded the scope of his authority when he indicted Manafort.
According to Bloomberg Law Litigation Analytics data, Jackson grants summary judgment motions slightly less than the D.C. District Court as a whole and denies them virtually the same amount of the time as the court. She grants or denies summary judgment motions in part slightly more often than the D.C. District Court as a whole.
While Jackson was affirmed in three of the four health law cases that have been appealed, her administrative law decisions were affirmed just over half of the time. A quarter of the time, her administrative law decisions were affirmed in part and reversed in part.
The parties involved in American Clinical Laboratory Association v. Azar can expect a long trial process.
Jackson has spent an average of 522 days to decide 15 Medicare cases, but that is par for the course in the D.C. District Court, which averages 520 days. Jackson decides Administrative Procedure Act cases dealing with agencies an average of 82 days quicker than the D.C. District Court as a whole, but that is still 331 days.
Looking for more analytics on judges? Look for regular Know Your Judge features or try Bloomberg Law’s Litigation Analytics. And contact us if there’s a judge you want us to feature.
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