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What You Need to Know About Florida's Baker Act - Part 2

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law We are frequently consulted by family members or friends of individuals who are erroneously confined under Florida's Baker Act or the Marchman Act . An erroneous confinement under the Baker Act can occur for a number of different reasons. However, the result is that an independent citizen is confined in violation of his constitutional rights to liberty and privacy. There is a similar law, the Hal S. Ma...

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7/23/2014 Comments(0)

What You Need to Know About Florida's Baker Act - Part 1

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law We are frequently consulted by family members of individuals who are erroneously confined under Florida's Baker Act, Section 394.451, Florida Statutes . An erroneous confinement under the Baker Act can occur for a number of different reasons. However, the result is that an independent citizen is confined in violation of his constitutional rights to liberty and privacy. There is a similar law that legal...

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7/21/2014 Comments(0)

Science Journal Retracts Stem-Cell Research Studies; Head Researcher Held Accountable

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law The scientific journal, Nature, retracted two high-profile stem-cell research studies due to signs of inadequate data and plagiarism. According to Tech Times, researchers from the RIKEN Center for Development Biology in Kobe, Japan, published results on January 30, 2014, claiming that scientists of the institute had successfully reprogrammed mature cells into young stem-cells. The stem-cells, a type of...

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7/15/2014 Comments(0)

Limits on Number of Attempts and Time for Completion of USMLE Step Exams

By Catherine T. Hollis, J.D., The Health Law Firm and George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law According to the United States Medical Licensing Examination USMLE 2014 Bulletin of Information, individuals are permitted to attempt the same Step Exam or Step Exam Component a maximum of six times. All attempts, including incomplete attempts, are counted toward the limit, regardless of when they were taken. The USMLE Program itself does not limit the...

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7/11/2014 Comments(0)

Document Drop Off: Where One Health System Left Private Patient Medical Records

By Lenis L. Archer, J.D., M.P.H. A drop off of private patient files to a physician quickly turned into what may be one of the most expensive deliveries in healthcare regulatory history. In 2009, employees of Parkview Health System, a nonprofit organization with hospitals in Indiana and northwest Ohio, left 71 cardboard boxes of private patient medical records in the driveway of a retiring physician. Within 20 feet of the public road and in close proximity to a heavily trafficked shopping venue,...

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6/30/2014 Comments(0)

Does the DEA Use Intimidation Tactics to Force Doctors and Pharmacists to Give up Their DEA Number?

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration DEA continues to crackdown, at least in Florida, on physicians and pharmacists suspected of prescribing and dispensing narcotics. We believe this effort is a continuation of the campaign against "pill mills" and the pharmacies that fill prescriptions written by them. However, just because you are not a pain management physician or pharmacist and you don'...

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6/24/2014 Comments(0)

Adventist Health System Self-Discloses Stark Law Violations

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law When I served with the federal government, a frequent saying used over and over was: "It's better to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission." This may be what Adventist Health System is hoping for in making its latest self-disclosure to the Office of Inspector General OIG . Documents released on May 12, 2014, reveal that Adventist, which owns Florida Hospital and 44 other hospitals nationwide, ...

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6/20/2014 Comments(0)

Outpatient Outsourcing: The Unconventional Methods of One Florida Urologist

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law "A menace to society," "board-certified in medical fraud," "one of the most dangerous doctors I've seen in a long time." These are some of the harsh words coming from the Florida Board of Medicine. The Board used those statements to describe a Sarasota, Florida, urologist who specializes in prostate problems. The urologist is accused of using unconventional diagnostic and treatment methods, even referr...

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6/18/2014 Comments(0)

Halifax Health Back in the Hot Seat - Why the Hospital was Hit with Even More Sanctions

Always be wary of asking "could it get any worse?" Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach, Florida, is proof that a situation always has the possibility of taking a darker turn. On May 27, 2014, the federal judge overseeing the ongoing Halifax whistleblower/qui tam court cases ruled that the medical center wrongfully destroyed documents and files that were central to the upcoming trial. The trial, slated for July 2014, is the second part of a case against Halifax and will concern allegat...

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6/10/2014 Comments(0)

How Tightened Controls on Prescribing for Medicare Part D Patients May Affect Health Care Providers-Part 2

By Lance O. Leider, J.D., The Health Law Firm Under a rule finalized by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services CMS on May 19, 2014, doctors and other health care professionals will be required to enroll in the Medicare program, or have a valid opt-out affidavit on file, for prescriptions to be covered under Part D. The new requirement takes effect on June 1, 2015. To read more on the details of this rule and why CMS implemented it, click here for the first blog of this two-part serie...

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6/6/2014 Comments(0)

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