Health Consumer Protection

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Payment is due at the time services are rendered

Typically, physicians collect co-payments from patients when services are provided, submit claims for reimbursement to government and commercial payers, and then send bills to patients for the balance owing. The payment and...more

Guest Post - Just the Fax, Ma’am

While Bexis is on vacation, here is a guest post to take up some of the slack. Our guest blogger today is Henry Pietrkowski, a partner in Reed Smith's Chicago office. This one's a little different. It's about the impace of...more

FCC Ruling Addresses Robocalls by Health Care Providers

Mintz Levin’s Communications Practice recently released a Communications Advisory discussing a Declaratory Ruling and Order released by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The ruling clarified and expanded the reach...more

FDA Regulation of Hospital-Developed Technologies - Hospital Industry Viewpoint

As hospitals become increasingly technologically savvy, they are looking to do more and more with their electronic health record systems. What many hospitals do not realize is that some of the functionality they are seeking...more

Regulators Likely To Heavily Scrutinize Proposed Humana-Aetna Merger

At the beginning of the month, insurance companies Aetna Inc. and Humana Inc. announced they would be pursuing a merger, with the former company acquiring the latter. Aetna, sources say, will be purchasing Humana for roughly...more

US Federal Communications Commission’s Recent Order Expands Potential Liability under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act for...

“This Order will make abuse of the TCPA much, much easier. And the primary beneficiaries will be trial lawyers, not the American public.” That’s what FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai had to say in his dissent from the FCC’s recent...more

Regulators Sue Four Michigan Hospitals for Agreeing to Restrict Marketing Activities

As most people know, agreements between competitors to fix prices or allocate or divide markets are clear violations of the antitrust laws and can result in serious penalties. In industries as diverse as foreign exchange...more

Class Action Suit Filed Against UCLA After It Suffers Massive Data Breach Affecting 4.5 Million Individuals

In yet another data breach affecting millions of individuals, UCLA Health System (“UCLA”) reported on July 17, 2015, that hackers had accessed portions of its health network that contained personal information, including...more

Cybersecurity is once again a hot topic as Illinois undergoes PIPA update

Cybersecurity is a hot topic at both the state and federal level. Specifically, Illinois is in the process of amending its Personal Information Protection Act (“PIPA”). Illinois SB 1833 will amend PIPA by establishing more...more

FDA Issues Warning Letter to Corporate Sponsor of Clinical Trial

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not frequently issue Warning Letters to corporate sponsors of FDA-regulated clinical trials, so the June 16, 2015, Warning Letter sent to AB Science, a pharmaceutical company...more

Hospital’s Cloud-Based Document-Sharing Practices Lead to $218,400 HIPAA Settlement

On July 10, 2015, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced a substantial settlement with St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center (SEMC). Under the terms of the settlement, the hospital...more

OCR Settlement with Massachusetts Hospital Over HIPAA Violations

On July 8, 2015, the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”), which enforces federal privacy standards for protected health information (“PHI”), settled an enforcement action...more

A Couple of Law Review Articles We Actually Like

The last couple of times we’ve commented on new law review articles, we haven’t liked what we’ve seen very much. We’re gluttons for punishment, however, and this time we were rewarded. We found a couple of recent law review...more

UCLA Health System announces data breach affecting 4.5 million patients and medical providers

Adding to the long list of cyber hacking victims, the UCLA Health System announced on Friday (July 17, 2015) that it confirmed on May 5, 2015 that a cyber-attacker had accessed parts of UCLA Health’s network back to September...more

Rhode Island Governor Signs Comprehensive Identity Theft Protection Act

On June 26, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo (D) signed into law Senate Bill 0134, the Rhode Island Identity Theft Protection Act of 2015 (the Act), which clarifies data security measures, expands protection to health data...more

Update on Opposition to ABA Hijinks

Last month, we described the proposal by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Medical Professional Liability concerning legislation on “defective medical products” and punitive damages for “patient harm...more

Bad News from Europe for Makers of Life-Saving Medical Devices

In over eight years, we’ve never before blogged about a European development in prescription medical product liability. The (relatively) recent decision by the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) in Boston...more

HIPAA Settlement Regarding Use of Internet Applications

On July 10, 2015, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced a settlement agreement with St. Elizabeth's Medical Center (SEMC) in Brighton, Massachusetts, regarding potential...more

Hospital Pays $218,400 to OCR for HIPAA Violations

St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center (“SEMC”), a tertiary care hospital in Brighton, Massachusetts, has agreed to pay $218,400 to the Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) to settle alleged violations of the Health Insurance Portability...more

Recent HHS Settlement Highlights Risks of Electronically-Sharing Protected Health Information

On July 10, 2015, the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced its second settlement of the year for violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act...more

FTC Comment: Minnesota Law Requiring Public Disclosure of Health Care Contract Data Increases Risk of Anticompetitive Behavior

On June 29, 2015, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) responded to a request for comment from two Minnesota state legislators concerning recently enacted amendments to the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act (MGDPA). Under...more

OSHA Provides Guidance on Health Care and Nursing Facility Enforcement Initiative

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently released a memorandum clarifying its enforcement efforts against the inpatient health care and nursing home industries. The list of covered facilities...more

Use of File-Sharing Service Leads To $218,400 Fine For HIPAA Violations

Internet-based file-sharing services such as Dropbox and Google Drive can be easy and convenient to use, whether via the touch of an app on a mobile device or by opening a browser on a PC. Healthcare professionals are often...more

FCC Order Creates New TCPA Challenges for Companies

As previously reported, the Federal Communications Commission recently approved a Declaratory Ruling and Order (the Order) addressing a number of petitions that requested the FCC clarify its interpretations of the Telephone...more

The Sixth Circuit Further Defines “Advertisement” Under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act

Last month, in a case of first impression, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion finding that unsolicited faxes intended strictly for informational purposes were not “advertisements” and therefore not...more

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