Dr. B. generates a flood of new patients through a newly designed, interactive website. Although very careful not to “practice medicine” on the Web, he offers one patient extensive advice about the pros and cons of the rosacea treatments she has received. She later sues Dr. B, claiming she delayed treatment due to his advice.
Health Law & Policy
Although the timeline for implementation of the ICD-10 coding system has been pushed back to October 2015, all dermatologists will have to deal with this eventually. Meaningful Use regulations are also here to stay and will impact every practitioner sooner or later. Mark Kaufman, M.D., associate clinical professor in the department of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical School in New York, explains the many vagaries of these initiatives for those of us who insist on pretending that they will never happen.
When it comes to electronic health record (EHR) implementation, dermatology isn’t at the beginning — the naive stage — or at the end — where the technology is doing what it’s supposed to do. Dermatology is in what one might call the teenage years, an awkward, frustrating, but hopeful, time.
Most tanning salons in Missouri would allow children as young as age 10 to tan if there were no legal restrictions against doing so, according to results of a survey conducted by researchers.
Federal regulators are more closely scrutinizing some dermatologic surgery codes, including those that are considered the “bread and butter” for skin cancer repairs. And codes that are deemed misvalued could be cut by as much as one-third by Medicare. Commercial carriers could follow suit.
A letter comes across your office fax machine indicating that your practice has been scheduled for an audit and site visit from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a Medicare administrative contractor, or a zone program integrity contractor the next morning at 8 a.m. Sound far-fetched? This exact scenario is likely if your practice is scheduled for such a visit from the federal government or a government contractor. The timing is intended to give you little chance to prepare.
E-prescribing has increased dramatically since 2008, according to a recent data brief from the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for Health Information Technology.
Electronic prescribing (e-prescribing) increases patient safety, experts say. This tool not only eliminates interpretation errors from handwritten prescriptions, it creates a communications bridge between the physician, pharmacist and patient.
At first, dermatologists seemed unlikely to be the subject of audits, but that is no longer the case. And it’s not only Medicare and Medicaid trying to recoup funds and find fraud — commercial carriers are as well. It’s a perfect storm for increasing medical audits at all types of physician practices — including dermatology.
A government crackdown on healthcare fraud could trigger new waves of physician audits, financial experts warn. Fraud costs the U.S. healthcare system some $65 billion a year from Medicare alone, and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) gives the government greater authority to identify and prosecute fraud and abuse.