Medical Malpractice Legal Briefs

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Medical Malpractice Legal Briefs

HIPAA

Having had close relatives recently in hospitals and rehabilitation facilities, I have gotten to observe up close, the handling of protected health information (PHI). Frankly, the medical and ancillary personnel had a rather cavalier attitude in the area of PHI. Discussions using patients’ names went on with no regard for who [...]

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The Danger of Mixing Opioids with Benzodiazepines

For those of my readers that treat pain and various psychiatric conditions, it is important to be aware that the CDC and all state licensing administrative bodies frown upon mixing opioids with benzodiazepines. Both are respiratory depressants. Many prescribers still mix these two medications. Has the patient been using both for [...]

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Risks of Using Uncertified Coders for Billing

I am often asked who should do my billing. All to often, a successful practice’s biller is an uncertified office manager. Perhaps that “biller” took a weekend course on billing. The “biller” often has no clue as to CPT-10 or ICD intricacies. Often I hear that “someone” told her/him, that using [...]

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Updating your physician profile on state websites dealing with licensing

In most states, there is a physician profile on the state website dealing with licensing. You are required to keep it updated and current. I am always amazed how many physicians do not know about it or have not updated it in years. Please keep in mind that various states are [...]

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Answering Administrative Inquiries From Your State Medical Board

What is the worst way in answering an administrative inquiry into your practice? Ignore it. Many physicians do not bother to answer or contact an attorney for a month or more after receiving such a letter. State investigators do not like being ignored; nobody likes being ignored. An investigation starts on [...]

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Negligence and Medical Malpractice

In the medical malpractice arena, physicians and providers often are sued for negligence. Upon investigation, it turns out that the subsequent treater's treatment was negligent or compounded the problem. Yet, that treater is not sued. Are you responsible for the damages done by the subsequent malpractice? The short answer is yes! [...]

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Inaccurate Reports / Biopsies / Results – Medical Malpractice Legal Brief – 8/27/2018

Please beware of new EMR software. Two different cases have had scenarios of various tests results being so off that the physician got in trouble for the obviously incorrect results. The numbers that the results are based on have to correlate to the same patient. This is not always occurring. It [...]

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Debt Collections – Medical Malpractice Legal Brief – 8/14/2018

Debt collection has become an important fact of life for today’s health care provider. You must be careful that you are following the law when attempting to collect debts owed to you and your practice. If you use a debt collection service, you must be careful they are following the law! [...]

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Chaperones – Medical Malpractice Legal Brief – 8/9/2018

I know we have been down this path before. However, recent news dictates a revisit. The easiest way for the practitioner to avoid charges of licentious conduct with a patient, is simply to use a chaperone. Note the use of the chaperone in hour chart along with the chaperone’s name. Easy [...]

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On Call Documentation – Medical Malpractice Legal Brief – 8/9/2018

Many of you are on call every few days. You will sometimes get a phone call in the middle of the night from the hospitalist covering your patient. Whatever your response, you must put it in the patient’s chart at your earliest possible convenience. For those of you who have the [...]

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