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Posts from March 2020.
By Lucie Huger on March 25, 2020 at 9:30 AM

The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has relaxed HIPAA privacy rules for health care providers engaging in telehealth activities during the COVID-19 public health emergency. To provide greater clarity to the Notification of Enforcement Discretion regarding COVID-19 released on March 17, 2020 (available here), the OCR has released FAQs available here.

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By Kathy Butler on March 24, 2020 at 12:25 PM

N95 maskThe FBI, Department of Justice and HHS Office of Inspector General are asking health care providers to be on the lookout for scams regarding the sale of counterfeit personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gowns, goggles or full-face shields, and N95 respirator masks as required PPE during the COVID-19 outbreak.

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By Sanja Ord on March 19, 2020 at 3:25 PM

Phone calling doctorOn March 17, 2020, the Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) issued a Policy Statement that will provide yet another avenue of relief from regulatory requirements as health care providers across the nation deal with the COVID-19 public health emergency.

This specific action by the OIG relieves physicians and other health care practitioners from administrative sanctions if they reduce or waive any cost-sharing obligations from federal health care beneficiaries seeking telehealth services.

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By Jeffrey Herman on March 17, 2020 at 4:00 PM

Emergency signAs the virus continues to spread, U.S. hospitals will likely see increasing numbers of potential cases of COVID-19 in their emergency departments. Hospitals are obligated under the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) to provide these individuals with certain examinations and, if necessary, stabilizing treatment or transfer. This raises a host of issues for hospitals that receive these individuals for care, including capacity and resource concerns, and the risks these individuals may pose to medical personnel and other people in the vicinity, including other patients and staff.

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By Kathy Butler on March 17, 2020 at 4:40 PM

Health AlertEffective March 15, 2020, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a Bulletin announcing that HHS Secretary Alex Azar has exercised his authority to waive sanctions and penalties against a covered hospital that does not comply with certain provisions of the HIPAA Privacy Rule.

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