The Health Law Blog

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Florida Governor Signs Sweeping COVID-19 Liability Protections Into Law

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On March 29, 2021, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill that protects businesses, governments, and healthcare providers in Florida from COVID-19 lawsuits if they make a reasonable effort to follow guidelines to prevent the spread of coronavirus whatever that means . Specifically, the measure gives civil immunity to corporations, hospitals, nursing homes, government entities, schools, and churches as...

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9/1/2021 Comments(0)

Florida Governor Signs Bill Requiring Licensure of Genetic Counselors

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On June 21, 2021, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a new law into a bill requiring genetic counselors to be licensed by the Florida Department of Health FLDOH . The Florida Department of Health, Genetic Counseling, was established to ensure that every genetic counselor in Florida meets minimum requirements for safe practice. The law, known as the Genetic Counseling Workforce Act GCWA , became effective...

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8/30/2021 Comments(0)

FBI Denies Claim That Harvard Researcher Requested a Lawyer During Fraud Interrogation

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On August 6, 2021, federal prosecutors pushed back on claims that government agents tricked a Harvard University professor into making incriminating statements during his interrogation by federal agents. Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation FBI said a Harvard nanotechnology researcher fighting federal charges of grant fraud never asked to have an attorney present during his interview. As ...

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8/20/2021 Comments(0)

Office of Inspector General (OIG) Adds New Areas on Annual Work Plan

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law Every year the Office of the Inspector General OIG of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services HHS , publishes a Work Plan disclosing the areas of health practice upon which it intends to concentrate its audit and anti-fraud activities for the upcoming year. This gives a heads up to healthcare providers in those areas to get their houses in order. COVID-19 Pandemic Vacation is Over. With the wi...

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8/16/2021 Comments(0)

How Much Will My Legal Defense in a Hospital Medical Staff Peer Review Fair Hearing Cost?

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law If you are a physician, nurse practitioner, oral surgeon, dentist, or other health professional with clinical privileges in a hospital, you may face a situation where you are required to defend yourself at a "fair hearing." A "fair hearing" is held by the hospital's medical staff pursuant to the Medical Staff Bylaws or Rules and Regulations of the Medical Staff. "Fair Hearing"--A Term of Art. The he...

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8/11/2021 Comments(0)

Mental Health Counselors and Psychotherapists: Follow These Simple Rules to Keep Your License and Avoid Complaints

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law I represent many mental health counselors, social workers, psychologists, and professional counselors, defending them on complaints being investigated against their professional licenses. Many complaints and investigations arise because the therapist has strayed over the line and crossed the therapist-client boundary. In reviewing these cases, I have drawn up a list of a few simple "bright line" ...

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8/5/2021 Comments(0)

Finding a Nurses Service Organization Insurance Attorney to Defend You in a Complaint Against Your Nursing License

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law Many nurses, nurse practitioners and certified registered nurse anesthetists CRNAs carry professional malpractice insurance through Nurses Service Organization NSO or one of the other similar insurance companies. This insurance is inexpensive and provides excellent coverage. What you may not realize, however, is that such insurance provides many added benefits, other than just coverage on nursing liabi...

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6/8/2021 Comments(0)

Military Non-judicial Punishments or Article 15 Proceedings Are Not Criminal Convictions--Military and Former Military Physicians, Dentists and Nurses Should Know This

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law Our firm represents many military and former military health professionals. We are often asked how a non-judicial punishment or Article 15 proceeding will be treated for license applications, clinical privileges applications, and background screenings. Article 15 Non-judicial Punishment Is Not the Same as a Court-martial or a Criminal Proceeding. Under Article 15 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice...

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6/3/2021 Comments(0)

Florida Passes Law for Health Professional Background Screening

By Michael L. Smith, R.R.T., J.D., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law For several years, many healthcare professionals have been required to pass a Level II background check in order to work in most Florida healthcare facilities licensed by the Agency for Health Care Administration AHCA . Many healthcare professionals are also required to pass a Level II background check in order to be licensed by the Florida Department of Health DOH . In March 2020, the Florida Legislature passed ...

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4/4/2021 Comments(0)

Florida Judge Won't Toss Lawsuit Filed By Family of Publix Employee Who Died of Coronavirus

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On February 5, 2021, a judge in Florida refused to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the family of a Publix Super Markets deli worker who died after allegedly catching COVID-19 from a coworker. Judge Carlos Lopez announced that he would not dismiss the lawsuit filed by Gerardo Gutierrez's family, who died on April 28, 2020, from complications caused by coronavirus. The suit was filed in the Florida Circuit Co...

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3/29/2021 Comments(0)