Healthcare Heroes: Yes, Pandemic Lawsuits Will Become Viral Print E-mail
Written by Matt Gracey   
Thursday, 21 May 2020 09:06

What a spicy, hot pandemic stew of lawsuits is brewing in America! This is particularly true in the healthcare world since this is a mother lode of a healthcare crisis.

Simmering now and headed to a boil are incredibly strong factors: Fear; sadness; isolation; divisiveness; suspicion; and distrustfulness of authority, of others, of scientists, of doctors, of politicians, of neighbors, of darn near everyone.

Throw in a predicted unemployment rate up to 30%, with over 36 million already out of work.

Add an economic downturn second only to the Great Depression. Economic desperation drives many lawsuits.

Sprinkle in a healthcare system very much based on employer-supplied coverage that has mostly now been terminated for the unemployed, disrupting long-term doctor / patient relationships, the best of which are the foundation of successful risk management to avoid being sued.

Add a bitterly politically divided country with a hotly contested election for our top elected positions.

Stir in a hundred-year pandemic for which we are ill prepared, as we fumble for swift, effective, coordinated responses.

Fold in a judicial system that judges doctors according to “standards of care” at a time when few standards, besides washing our hands frequently, are even agreed upon.

Overlay that now-boiling stew with the most highly litigious culture in the world, in a country that produces vast quantities of lawyers every year, with plaintiff and class-action-happy lawyers chasing dog-bite cases with billboards, mass emails, and doctors’ mistakes with letters of intent to sue.

Then throw all of that into a very-hot oven for an undetermined amount of time with highly educated doctors risking their and their families’ lives every day to help their patients.

See why we are concerned about what doctors are facing on the other side of this hot pandemic kitchen we call America?

Start now – protect your practice and yourself! Work on strengthening every one of your patient relationships, be empathetic, and be great with your communications, documentation, and expressions of care and concern. Review your med mal coverage with an expert. Dust off every risk management technique you have learned.

Most of all, remember that you are a hero and are loved.

Matt Gracey is the CEO of Danna-Gracey, a medical malpractice insurance agency in Delray Beach.

Last Updated on Thursday, 21 May 2020 09:29
DOJ's First Antitrust Criminal Prosecution of a Health Care Provider in 25 Years May Signal a New Era for Health Care Antitrust Print E-mail
Written by Mitchell D. Raup & Herbert F. Allen   
Friday, 08 May 2020 18:36

Antitrust enforcement against physicians and hospitals is common, but criminal antitrust prosecutions of health care providers are very rare. There were none for over 50 years, between 1940 and 1990.  The Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice brought two criminal cases in 1990 and 1995, charging dentists and optometrists with price-fixing. Then for 25 years, DOJ did not charge a provider with an antitrust crime. Until now.

On April 30, 2020, DOJ charged a Florida oncology clinic with a criminal antitrust conspiracy. The one-count criminal information in US v. Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute LLC ("FCS") alleges that FCS conspired with another oncology clinic, 21st Century Oncology, and other unnamed co-conspirators, to allocate markets in southwest Florida. They agreed that FCS would do medical oncology and 21st Century Oncology would do radiation oncology, and the two would not compete against each other. This conspiracy continued for 17 years, from 1999 to 2016.

The case settled with a deferred prosecution agreement, in which FCS agreed to pay $100 million (the maximum criminal fine for a corporation convicted of a single antitrust violation) and to cooperate in DOJ's prosecution of others involved in the conspiracy. In a separate settlement with the State of Florida, FCS agreed to pay Florida another $20 million.

The top 10 drugs by sales increase in 2020 Print E-mail
Written by Kyle Blankenship | FiercePharma   
Tuesday, 21 April 2020 18:04

Some drugmakers work for years to take one of their meds from launch to blockbuster status--a journey defined by competition, the market, branding and a dash of luck. But even for pharma's biggest whales, growth-minded executives have a question: What have you done for me lately? Driven by billions of dollars of R&D, some of the most lucrative drugs in the world drive 10-figure growth each year through a mixture of new indications, greater market access and good old-fashioned doctor word of mouth. Thanks to the team at EvaluatePharma and its Vantage 2020 Preview report, we here at FiercePharma have compiled a list of top 10 drugs by estimated sales increase in 2020--a group comprising some of the most successful launches in recent years, with a few surprises thrown in as well.

Doctors say COVID-19 has slashed patient volumes, made finances shaky Print E-mail
Written by Ron Shinkman | Healthcare Dive   
Wednesday, 15 April 2020 09:33

The focus on fighting the Novel Coronavirus has caused volumes of other types of patients to plummet, according to a new survey of physicians by Piper Sandler. Analysts spoke to 160 physicians across 16 specialties in four states - California, Massachusetts, Washington and New York. About half are in private practice. According to the survey, patient volumes are down 65% and will likely remain at that depressed level until the end of this month. They are expected rebound, but slowly, and will still be down as much as 12% during the same time next year. At the same time, more than half of patient encounters will be through telemedicine through the foreseeable future. And while that will help some practices in the short term, many doctors are considering furloughing or laying off employees.

Sponsor Showcase Print E-mail
Written by Sponsor   
Tuesday, 12 May 2020 00:00
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Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 May 2020 17:43

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