Chapter 3 Legal and Ethical Issues in Medical Practice, Including HIPPA Chapter 15 Health Insurance Billing Procedures
February 19th, 2013
A. Medical law plays an important role in the medical facility procedures and the way we care for patients.
B. There are two main reasons for medical professionals to study law and ethics.
The first is to help you function at the highest professional level by providing competent, compassionate health care to patients.
The second is to help you avoid legal problems that can threaten your ability to earn a living.
II- Medical Law and Ethics
A. A law is defined as a rule of conduct or action prescribed or formally recognized as binding or enforced by a controlling authority.
B. Ethics is considered a standard of behavior and concept of right and wrong beyond what the legal consideration is in any given situation.
Moral values serve as a basis for ethical conduct. Moral values are formed through the influence of the family, culture, and society.
III- The Patient-Physician Contract
A. A physician has the right, after forming a contact or agreement to accept a patient under his or her care, to make reasonable limitations on the contractual relationship.
B. The physician is under no legal obligations to treat patients who may wish to exceed those limitations.
Physicians has the right to, set up a practice within the boundaries of his or her license to practice medicine. Set up an office where he or she chooses and to establish office hours. Specialize, decide which services he or she will provide and how those services will be provided.
IV- Special Circumstances for Physicians Practices
A. Distressful economic circumstances may happen when a medical practice has to terminate and close its services to its patients.
B. It is necessary the medical staff and all physicians, comply with all HIPPA laws for maintaining confidentiality.
Write letters to all patients, giving them knowledge that the practice will be closing .
Give patients an option of choosing another physician, or make referrals.
E. Keep all files in a secured location for the maximum amount of time files should be saved.
F. Are up to date with HIPPA laws that will affect the practice.
V- OSHA Regulations
A. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, a division of the U.S Department of Labor, has created federal laws to protect health-care workers from health hazards on the job.
B. Some of the most important OSHA regulations are those for controlling workers exposure to infectious disease.
Regulations are set in the OSHA Blood borne Pathogens Protection Standard of 1991.
A pathogen is any microorganism that causes disease.
VII- Laws That protect the Employee
A. Medical facilities are required to have an exposure plan to safeguard their employees.
B. Personal protective equipment gear.
Immunizations against hepatitis B
Information on what to do in case of exposure
E. Information on decontamination of waste products
F. Information on how to dispose the sharp equipment.
G. Information on post-exposure evaluation and follow-up
H. Information on how to keep inventory of hazardous materials I. Labeling for bio hazardous wastes.
J. Training and annual updates regarding hazardous materials and infectious substances
K. Record keeping and documentation to protect the legal rights and safety of employees
A. August 21, 1996, the U.S Congress passed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability.
B. The primary goals of the act are to improve the portability and continuity of health-care coverage.
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