By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law
On October 8, 2012, the Osceola County, Florida, Commissioners unanimously approved an ordinance that will regulate pain management clinics, according to the Orlando Sentinel. The ordinance will take effect on October 31, 2012, and will be in effect for 10 years.
Click here to see the ordinance passed at the Osceola County Commissioner’s meeting.
This is part of the continuing efforts by law enforcement to cut down on prescription drug abuse that plagues the state.
Details of the Ordinance.
The ordinance spells out what constitutes a pain management clinic, prohibits cash-only payments and requires pain management clinics to provide the names of employees to the county.
The ordinance also requires that clinics participate in the Department of Health’s (DOH) Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. That means pain management doctors will have to track and provide monthly reports on how many prescriptions are issued for controlled substances, and provide certain patient data, such as age ranges, race and gender.
Anyone caught violating these rules will be punished with the loss of their business tax receipt.
Any hospital or physician engaged in short-term treatment of pain (90 days or less) is exempt from the ordinance.
Could Seminole County Be Next?
Seminole County, Florida, Commissioners were set to vote on a similar ordinance at their meeting on October 9, 2012, but heard arguments from doctors. The ordinance will now be considered next month, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Click here to read the entire article from the Orlando Sentinel.
Tips for Pain Management Doctors to Stay Inside the Law.
On top of following the new ordinance, Osceola County doctors and any doctor working in pain management, should read this article on tips to protect themselves from drug-seeking patients.
Contact Health Law Attorneys Experienced with Investigations of Health Professionals and Providers.
The attorneys of The Health Law Firm provide legal representation to physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, CRNAs, pain management doctors, dentists, pharmacists, psychologists and other health providers in Department of Health (DOH) investigations, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) investigations, FBI investigations, Medicare investigations, Medicaid investigations and other types of investigations of health professionals and providers.
To contact The Health Law Firm, please call (407) 331-6620 or (850) 439-1001 and visit our website at www.TheHealthLawFirm.com.
As a healthcare professional, what do you think of this ordinance? Please leave any thoughtful comments below.
Breen, David. “Osceola Ordinance Targets Pill Mills.” Orlando Sentinel. (October 9, 2012). From: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/local/breakingnews/os-osceola-pain-clinic-ordinance-20121009,0,2467210.story
About the Author: George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law. He is the President and Managing Partner of The Health Law Firm, which has a national practice. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. www.TheHealthLawFirm.com The Health Law Firm, 1101 Douglas Ave., Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620.
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