FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Sara K. Wheeler

King & Spalding LLP
Partner
Atlanta, GA, USA


Sara Kay Wheeler practices exclusively in the area of health law where she advises a diverse array of organizations including health systems, academic medical centers, health plans, faculty practice plans and entities involved in the drug delivery system, including retail pharmacies (chain pharmacies and large retailers with pharmacy operations), specialty pharmacies, pharmacy benefit managers and retail clinics. She has extensive experience in the creation and implementation of corporate compliance programs and investigations, government contractor audits (including RACs, MACs, MICs, PSCs and ZPICs), Medicare regulation (including Medicare Part D issues), Medicaid regulation (including managed care, audit and enforcement matters), fraud and abuse concerns, internal investigations, voluntary disclosure strategies, clinical research compliance, privacy matters and managed care arrangements. Ms. Wheeler also works with King & Spalding’s Special Matters Group to defend healthcare providers that are investigated by federal and state enforcement entities. Ms. Wheeler has authored numerous publications in the healthcare trade press and regularly speaks on a wide variety of industry topics. Ms. Wheeler is Certified in Healthcare Compliance.

Ms. Wheeler currently serves as Vice President on the Health Care Compliance Association / Society of Corporate Compliance & Ethics (HCCA/SCCE) Board of Directors, is a member of the HCCA/SCCE Executive Committee and previously served as HCCA Treasurer and HCCA Secretary. Ms. Wheeler is a past president of the Georgia Academy of Healthcare Attorneys, and chaired the Advisory Council for the Health Law Partnership (HeLP), a collaboration among the Georgia State University College of Law, the Atlanta Legal Aid Society and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. She is also a graduate of the Leadership Georgia Program.

Awards and Recognitions

  • Best Lawyers in America (2006 - 2015)
  • Georgia Super Lawyers (2006 - 2015)
  • Listed in Legal 500 U.S. Guide (2015)
  • Chambers USA (2007 - 2015)
  • Georgia Super Lawyers' Rising Stars (2005 & 2006)
  • Nightingale’s “Outstanding Hospital Lawyers” List (2008)

Practices

  • Healthcare
  • Business Litigation
  • Special Matters & Investigations

Education

  • J.D., Wake Forest University School of Law, cum laude, 1992
  • Wake Forest Law Review, Executive Articles Editor, 1991-1992
  • B.S.N., University of Pennsylvania, magna cum laude, 1989, Nursing
  • B.A., University of Pennsylvania, 1989, Communications

Bar & Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, 2003
  • Georgia, 1992
  • Texas, 2007

Memberships

  • 2010-2011 Class of Leadership Georgia
  • American Health Lawyers Association
  • Moderator, AHLA Compliance List Serve
  • Atlanta Speech School Guild, Volunteer and Board Member, 2002-2005; Gala Co-Chair, 2004
  • Georgia Academy of Healthcare Attorneys
    • Past President, 2007-2008; President, 2006-2007; President-Elect, 2005-2006; Secretary/Treasurer, 2004-2005; Board of Directors, 2001-2005
    • Member, 1992-Present
  • Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA)
  • Health Care Compliance Association
  • Board of Directors, 2009-2014
  • Vice President
  • Member of Executive Committee
  • Co-Chair, Southeast Regional Conference, 2006-2015
  • Former Board Secretary
  • Former Board Treasurer
  • Health Law Partnership (HeLP), Chair, Advisory Council, 2004-2006
  • The Junior League of Atlanta, Atlanta Speech School Liaison 2006-2007; District Chair, 2004-2005; District Chair-elect, 2003-2004; District Advisor, 1998-2004; Member, 1994-2005
  • National Association for Medicaid Program Integrity (NAMPI), Member, 2009 - Present
  • The American Association of Nurse Attorneys, Member, 1997-2005
  • The University of Pennsylvania, Alumni Secondary School Committee
  • Wake Forest Law Alumni Council
  • Publications
  • “Scales Tip in Favor of 68% Pay for Denied Claims, but Hospital Finds It’s a Lot of Work, “Report on Medicare Compliance, September 15, 2014
  • “Navigating the Medicare Appeals Process ALJ decisions on awarding Part B Payment,” Dennis Barry's Reimbursement Advisor, co-authored with Stephanie F. Johnson, November 2012
  • “2012 OIG Work Plan: Part 2, Additional OIG Reviews,” HCCA Compliance Today, Volume 14, Number Two, co-authored with Stephanie F. Johnson, February 2012
  • “2012 OIG Work Plan: Part 1, Priorities by provider and supplier type,” HCCA Compliance Today, Volume 14, Number One, co-authored with Stephanie F. Johnson, January 2012
  • “Utilize RAC Delay to Prepare for Audits; CMS Uses Different Tactics for MICs, RACs,” The HCCA-AIS Medicaid Compliance News, Volume 5, Number 3, co-authored with Kate Stern, March 2011
  • "2011 OIG Work Plan, Part 2: Additional Areas of Focus," Health Care Compliance Association Compliance Today, co-authored with Stephanie L. Fuller, February 2011
  • “Meet the Fraud Busters: Program Safeguard Contractors and Zone Program Integrity Contractors,”Journal of Health & Life Sciences Law, co-authored with Stephanie L. Fuller, and J. Austin Broussard, February 2011
  • "2011 OIG Work Plan: Projects reflect shifting regulatory environment, Part 1," Health Care Compliance Association Compliance Today, co-authored with Stephanie L. Fuller, January 2011
  • “Compliance Officer Roundtable: American Health Lawyers Association Fraud and Compliance Forum,” presented with Alana B. Sullivan, Kim Lansford, and Sara Kay Wheeler, Journal of Health & Life Sciences Law, April 2010
  • January 2010 HCCA Compliance Today, “2010 OIG Work Plan: Providing the Script for OIG Review,” co-authored with Tizgel High
  • “A Compliance Officer’s Guide to the Stark Laws and Regulations,” The Health Care Compliance Professional’s Manual, Health Care Compliance Association (HCCA), co-authored with Kim Roeder, Kate Stern and Kinshasa Williams, July 2009
  • “Medicaid Integrity Are You Ready for the MIC Movement?” Dennis Barry's Reimbursement Advisor co-authored with Tizgel High, October 2009
  • 18th Annual King & Spalding Health Law and Policy Forum: “Hot Topics” In Healthcare Fraud Enforcement - Administrative. Interview with Kim Roeder, The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel magazine, April 2009.
  • “Understanding the Golden Carrot: Voluntary Disclosure Strategies after the April 15, 2008, OIG Open Letter,” Journal of Health Care Compliance, co-authored with Tizgel High, Sept/Oct, 2008.
  • “Medicaid Auditors Soon to Follow RACs,” HcPro, Inc.’s Healthcare Auditing Weekly, September 2008
  • “CMS Sheds Light on the New Medicaid World,” AHLA Member Briefing, November 2007“
  • CMS Posts Enforcement, Audit and Corrective Action Plan Summaries,” PoGo Alert, co-authored with Kim Roeder, October 2007
  • “Establishing Physician Protocols,” Counsel to Counsel Magazine, co-authored with Kim Roeder, October 2007
  • “Proposed Stark Amendment Targets Physician-Owned Hospitals,” PoGo Alert, co-authored with Kinshasa Williams, August 2007
  • “Medicaid Enforcement Amidst the Perfect Storm,” Journal of Health Care Compliance, co-authored with Tizgel High, July - August 2007
  • “CMS Document Sheds Light On The New Medicaid World,” AHLA.com, co-authored with Sandra Herron, July 2007
  • “Chapter Five of CMS' Prescription Drug Benefit Manual: Benefits and Beneficiary Protections,” American Health Lawyers Association Member Briefing, co-authored with Benjamin Erwin, May 2007
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