Category Archives: Physician Regulation

The Key Federal Statutes Regulating Doctors

Healthcare regulations seem to grow more complex with every passing year.  Doctors are expected to know, and comply with, an alphabet soup of federal statutes and associated regulations governing everything from employment to patient privacy to personal finances, and everything in between.  In order to simplify matters, we have prepared the following summary of the federal statutes we most often encounter in our practice. 

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Concierge Medicine: The Return of the House Call

Many physicians, frustrated by the bureaucracy of modern medical practice, the financial pressure to shorten appointments and limit face time with patients, and the delays and hassle of dealing with health insurers for reimbursement, are increasingly turning to concierge medical practices as an alternative.  Under this business model, patients pay a set annual fee for unlimited (or nearly unlimited) access to a private primary care physician, many of whom will even make house calls for minor illnesses, injuries and physicals.

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PCI DSS Compliance: The Other Privacy Rules

In previous posts, we covered the ins and outs of HIPAA and its four general rules: Privacy, Security, Breach Notification and Enforcement.  In this post, we discuss the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (“PCI DSS”), an often overlooked privacy standard that, while overlapping somewhat with HIPAA, is a completely separate set of standards that govern security over your patient’s credit cards.

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Navigating the Regulatory Environment for Doctors Part 6 – HIPAA Enforcement

In our last two posts we’ve evaluated HIPAA’s Privacy Rule and the Security Rule/Breach Notification Rule, which outline your duties under HIPAA. In our final post in this series, we’re going to take a close look at what happens if you violate, those rules, whether intentionally or inadvertently.

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Navigating the Regulatory Environment for Doctors Part 5 – HIPAA Security and Breach Notification

In our last post we started our discussion of HIPAA, the federal law governing patient privacy, with a look at HIPAA’s Privacy Rule.  HIPAA is intended to impose nationwide standards on doctors in protecting patient privacy and pre-empts, or supersedes, any conflicting state laws.  Therefore, Arizona’s patient privacy laws largely defer to federal law on the issue.[1]

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Navigating the Regulatory Environment for Doctors Part 4 – HIPAA Privacy

In our recent posts we have looked at several regulatory systems that affect doctors: the disciplinary process, regulations related to the handling of prescription drugs, and OSHA regulations.  In the next three posts, we will look at a regulatory framework that has had a major impact on medical and dental practices, both in Arizona and throughout the country, over the last ten years: the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).  We will explain some of the most important components of HIPAA and walk you through the rules you must comply with to protect your patients’ privacy.

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Navigating the Regulatory Environment for Doctors Part 3 – OSHA

In our previous posts in this series, we looked at the discipline process as well as regulations surrounding the handling and prescribing of medication.  This post will focus on the workplace safety regulations applicable to doctors’ offices at both the state and federal level.

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Navigating the Regulatory Environment for Doctors Part 2 – Prescription Drugs

In our previous post, we looked at the disciplinary framework for dentists as a whole.  This post will look specifically at one topic that has increasingly resulted in discipline for both dentists and physicians alike over the last few years: narcotic pain medication prescriptions.

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After Graduation – Legal Tips for New Doctors

June is graduation season for new doctors in Arizona.  While graduating from medical or dental school is an enormous achievement, it may also be a time of uncertainty as you transition from the academic setting into your new career in the professional world.  The following are some legal and practical tips that might help you as you embark on your career.

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How Recent Health Insurance Mergers May Affect Your Bottom Line

Since the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act for the second time in three years, there has been a frenzy of attempted mergers and acquisitions by healthcare insurance companies. Today, we’re going to take a look at five of the largest health insurers, their various offers and bids for mergers and present it in an easy to follow guide. These insurers are Anthem Inc. (which includes some, but not all, of the Blue Cross/Blue Shield entities), Cigna, UnitedHealth Group, Inc., Aetna Inc., & Humana Inc. Then, we are going to discuss what a merger would mean for providers who contract with these companies.

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