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New Opportunities for Dental Practices and Dental Support Organizations

Effective July 23, 2017, a new law (Substitute Senate Bill 5322) resolves many long-running conflicts between licensed dentists and dental support organizations, which are typically not owned by licensed dentists.  The bill brings clarity to a number of issues, though some issues remain unaddressed. Dental support organizations have used creative methods to make inroads within Washington’s dental industry. Creativity is … Continue reading »

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Washington Court Upholds Physician Noncompete, But Caution Is Warranted

In Emerick v. Cardiac Study Center, Inc., P.S., the Washington court of appeals held a physician noncompete does not automatically violate public policy, and will be upheld when reasonable. The case involved a cardiology practice with four office locations in Pierce County, each near a hospital.  The noncompete prohibited physicians from practicing cardiac medicine in competition with the company for five … Continue reading »

Special Fraud Alert

Yelp Adding Medicare and Other Healthcare Data

A recent article in The Washington Post highlighted that Yelp is adding government information on hospitals, nursing homes and dialysis clinics to its popular review site.  Patients can now look up  an emergency room’s average wait time, fines paid by a nursing home and other information.  Yelp is partnering with ProPublica, which has deeply mined government data to create surgeon … Continue reading »

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Updated National Practitioner Data Bank Guidebook Expands Reporting Requirements

Most physicians probably recognize that a hospital must report certain professional review actions adversely affecting a physician’s clinical privileges to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB), which can have serious career consequences for a physician.  Physicians may not, however, realize that the recently updated Guidebook for the NPDB sometimes requires such a report be submitted merely because a physician is … Continue reading »

Victory for Physicians Defending against Medical Malpractice Actions

In Fergen v. Sestero, Washington’s Supreme Court recently handed an important victory to physicians defending medical malpractice actions.  The ruling involved the exercise of judgment instruction, which reminds juries that if a physician exercises the reasonable care and skill generally required by his or her position, making the wrong choice when choosing between alternate treatments or diagnoses does not make … Continue reading »

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