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Sara Pugh, Health Care Attorney, Polsinelli

Granny Cam Laws: The Right to the Device Versus the Right to Privacy



By Sara Pugh
Health Care Attorney
Polsinelli



As the population ages and the use of technology in everyday life increases, the installation of video cameras in long term care facilities, also known as “granny cams,” is on the rise. There are many reasons a family member may want to install a granny cam, including the ability to check on a loved one or confirm or deny abuse or neglect. Using cameras can also increase accountability of health care facility staff and can be used by facilities as a training tool. Regardless of the intended purpose, the use of video cameras in health care facilities raises privacy concerns, especially when the resident has a roommate, when a resident suffers from cognitive decline, or when the family covertly installs the camera unbeknownst to the facility.  Read article
Laboratory Technician Managing Human Fluids

Health Care's Latest Pi$$ing Contest


By Craig B. Garner, Founder
Garner Health Law Corporation


Last March dozens of insurance companies filed suit in Florida against a hospital, a laboratory and a medical claims collection agency for more than $100 million. Earlier in March Anthem initiated an action to recover $13.5 million against a small hospital in Sonoma County, California allegedly creating an illegal pass-through arrangement for laboratory claims. In April UnitedHealthcare sued the owners of two laboratory companies in Texas for supposedly orchestrating a similar pass-through scheme that resulted in reimbursements of $44 million. Read article
Behavioral Health Work Conducting SSRS Study

The Impact of C-SSRS (Columbia - Suicidal Severity Rating Scale) Usage on Quality of Care in John George Psychiatric Hospital (San Leandro, CA)


By Pius Omolewa, RN, PhD, Director of Nursing, Behavioral Health Services, Alameda Health System
By Karyn L. Tribble, PsyD, LCSW, CAO, Behavioral Health Services, Alameda Health System
The efficient utilization of resources depends upon effective prioritization of patients’ needs. The use of the Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS, a questionnaire used for suicide screening and assessment) at the time of admission helps in the assessment processes to identify potential suicidal patients thereby informing the clinical judgment of professionals to implement right interventions. The provision of appropriate interventions to deserving patients has been observed to increase patient satisfaction that can ultimately reduce length of stay in acute settings. Read article
Business People Discussing Contract with Physician

Taking Advantage of Payor Contracts: Pitfalls of Hospital Pass-Through Billing Arrangements


By Richard S. Coooper, Elizabeth A. Sullivan & Emily A. Johnson, McDonald Hopkins, LLC
By Donna M. Beasley, Huron Consulting Group
There are numerous new laboratory referral arrangements that involve billing which may implicate several laws at both the Federal and State level. Due to reduced reimbursements and narrower payor networks, these arrangements on the surface may seem advantageous and attractive as a means to increase revenues and align new clients. However, the health insurers as payors of pass-through laboratory claims are now recognizing and making attempts to stop the flow of these potentially fraudulent and lucrative schemes through lawsuits and tougher contracting. Read article