Lee Lasris featured in South Florida Legal Guide

Florida Health Law Center co-founder Lee Lasris is among South Florida’s top health care lawyers featured in the October issue of the South Florida Legal Guide.

The article titled “Navigating Healthcare’s Changing Financial Landscape” has Lasris, and other health care attorneys, discussing the impact the Affordable Care Act is having on providers, payors and investors.

Click here to read the article.

Lee Lasris interviewed about DOJ guidelines dealing with the medical necessity of ICDs.

Sept. 26, 2012 – This past August, the U.S. Department of Justice sent guidelines to hospitals that dealt with the medical necessity of implantable cardioverter defibrillators, or ICDs.

The guidelines were released to help with the settlement of claims stemming out of the DOJ’s investigation on ICDs that were placed in Medicare beneficiaries between 2003 and 2010 at hospitals. Hundreds of hospitals stand to face False Claims Act penalties for improper use of ICDs as a result of the investigations, which as most hospitals going through fraud and abuse measures right now know can be a very costly process. Click here to read the full story.

Efforts to Stifle Patients’ Online Comments May Not Hold Up in Court

Sept. 7, 2012 – It used to be that word of mouth – good or bad – was the only thing healthcare professionals had to worry about when it came to a patient sullying their reputation. But the explosive growth of the internet and proliferation of websites that urge patients to rate and comment on the care they receive has caused some physicians to fight back by asking patients to sign a “mutual agreement to maintain privacy.”

Click here to read more of Lee Lasris’ article  in the September issue of South Florida Hospital News.

Case Study: Independent ASC’s and outside physicians

May 21, 2012 — Question: An independent ambulatory surgery center (ASC) is open just a few days a week. It is staffed by physicians from the provider group that owns the center.

In an effort to increase revenue, the ASC is considering a deal with an outside, small provider group that seeks to use the ASC on the days when it is usually closed. As part of the agreement, the outside group would be credentialed by the ASC, allowing it to use the ASC’s operating rooms and support staff, without charge.

The outside group would bill its own professional fees, while the ASC would bill for use of the facility. In today’s regulatory environment, should the owners of the ASC be concerned that allowing the outside group to use the ASC for free would constitute a kickback?

Can an ASC allow a provider to come in, use the operating rooms and bill their own fees, without any type of agreement?

Answer: While it may be best to draw up a written agreement setting forth the terms and conditions for using the center’s operating rooms — including for example credentialing the physicians who will use the facility — as long as the outside providers aren’t receiving a cut of the facility fees, then the federal Anti-Kickback Statute (AKS) should not apply. Because outside physician groups are only performing surgery at the ASC, and billing for their professional services, then the arrangement should be no different than if the doctors were performing surgery at a hospital with each party billing for the services they provide.

But, what if the independent physician group wanted to rent the ASC for blocks of time during which they could perform their surgical procedures?  That is also possible provided that the parties enter into a rental agreement meeting both safe harbor and Stark regulatory requirements. The physician group may then be entitled to both a facility fee and their professional fee, subject to applicable state licensure laws and the requirements of Medicare and third-party payers.

Lee Lasris, partner, Florida Health Law Center



Specializing in all areas of health law including fraud and abuse, bioethics, health care business transactions, HIPAA, compliance programs, pharmaceutical, managed care, clinical trials, medical staff issues, contracting and licensure issues.


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