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UnitedHealth Ramps Up Coverage of Video Doctor Visits

UnitedHealthcare, the largest private insurer in the United States, has announced that it will provide coverage for telemedicine to its self-funded employer customers. In partnering with three telemedicine providers, UnitedHealth is offering its insured 24-hour video access to licensed and qualified physicians in their state. The insurance company will pay a portion of a valid video conference, which is typically up to $30 less than an in-person visit. The remaining...

Office for Civil Rights Settles with an Independent Compounding Pharmacy Violations of HIPAA Rules

On April 22, 2015, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced a $125,000 settlement with a single location pharmacy to resolve potential violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). OCR initiated a compliance review and investigation of Cornell Prescription Pharmacy after receiving notice from a third party that the Pharmacy improperly disposed of documents containing the unsecured Protected...

The Telemedicine Trend in Healthcare

Telemedicine is a rapidly growing method of practicing medicine by way of electronic communication. It is only logical that advancements in both technology and communication would alter the age-old practice of medicine. Engaging in this practice of remote healthcare allows providers to reach more patients and grow their businesses by providing health care services, such as primary and specialty care and remote patient monitoring, via videoconference rather than requiring all...

The Federal Government has Issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Related to Safe Harbors to the Anti-Kickback Statute

On October 2, 2014, the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) proposed several rule changes to the Federal Anti-Kickback Statute that would revise certain safe harbors as well as the civil monetary penalty (CMP) rules, offering greater protection against criminal prosecution and civil sanctions for certain payment practices and business arrangements. Referral Services The first proposed change is a technical correction, which the...

Resurgence of the House Call

Nowadays, it seems as though everything, from grocery shopping to banking, can be done online, and it appears that the practice of medicine is the next field poised for redevelopment by way of digital technology. Several new web and mobile device applications have recently been developed, launching location-based platforms for physician house call services. These services are predicated on convenience, and connect physicians and patients instantaneously and in real time,...