The Health Law Blog

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Massachusetts Mental Health Centers Submitted False Claims According to Suit

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On January 5, 2018, the state of Massachusetts lodged a False Claims Act FCA suit in federal court against the operators of a number of mental health centers. In the suit, it is alleged that they improperly billed the state Medicaid program for services provided by unlicensed, unqualified and unsupervised employees. The complaint seeks to recover MassHealth’s payments to South Bay Mental Health C...

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2/12/2018 Comments(0)

Florida Senate Health Committee Approves Change In Optometrist Certification

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On December 5, 2017, the Florida Senate Health Policy Committee approved a bill that would allow the Florida Board of Optometry to offer practical and written certification examinations to applicants. The bill would assist optometrists who were licensed before July 1993 and, therefore, were not required to be certified. Certified vs. Licensed. In Florida, the law allows certified optometrists to prescr...

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2/6/2018 Comments(0)

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Agents May Surprise You at Florida Board of Medicine Meeting

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M. Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law At several recent Florida Board meetings, after hearings at which disciplinary cases were considered by the Board, Drug Enforcement Administration DEA agents approached the health professional. Even in instances where the physician was represented by an attorney and the attorney was there, the DEA agents confronted the professional involved. What Were the DEA Agents Trying to Do? In the cases where The ...

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2/6/2018 Comments(0)

Broward Health Executives Charged for Conspiring to Get Rid of CEO

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On December 12, 2017, five North Broward Health District executives were hit with criminal charges. A state attorney is alleging violations of Florida’s open government laws for supposedly holding secret meetings at which they decided to terminate the former interim chief executive. The Broward County State Attorney’s Office served summons on Broward Health’s interim president and CEO...

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1/30/2018 Comments(0)

Trump Administration Reverses Guidelines for Penalties Against Nursing Homes

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law The Trump administration is actively reversing nursing home guidelines previously put in place under President Barack Obama. The current administration is scaling back the use of fines against nursing homes that harm residents or place them in grave risk of injury. The change in the Medicare program’s penalty protocols was requested by the nursing home industry. The American Health Care Associati...

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1/29/2018 Comments(0)

Denver Coffee Shop May Become First Business to Allow Social Marijuana Use

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On December 12, 2017, the first application to allow social marijuana use in a business has landed in Colorado. This first application seeks to allow vaping and use of edibles southwest of downtown. Denver is the first in the U.S. to allow public consumption at businesses and at permitted events. You won't have to fly all the way to Amsterdam any longer to partake of the weed. The Coffee Joint. The fir...

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1/16/2018 Comments(0)

Can “Green Banking” Be a Possible Solution to Marijuana Industry Money?

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On December 22, 2017, California announced a possible solution to the problem of banks being unwilling to handle money from the legal marijuana industry. Talks are underway between the state, banks and federal regulators on a plan to allow banks to serve a marijuana market that is expected to grow to $7 billion annually by 2020 in California. Starting January 1, 2018, it will be legal to grow and sell ...

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1/12/2018 Comments(0)

Appeals Court Affirms Discipline for Doctor Who Sold Prescriptions at Bar

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On December 15, 2017, a physician who sold painkiller prescriptions to patients at a bar and restaurant, had his two-year probation for unprofessional conduct upheld by a Maryland appeals court. The court upheld the decision after it found that the evidence supported the state board’s disciplinary decision. Unprofessional Conduct Alleged. The Court of Special Appeals affirmed the ruling by the Ma...

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12/28/2017 Comments(0)

State of Florida Sued as DOH Fails to Grant New Pot Licenses

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On November 22, 2017, a plant nursery and a man who has epilepsy, filed suit alleging that it's "high time" for the Florida Department of Health DOH to comply with a Florida constitutional amendment and its implementing legislation. The constitutional amendment requires the DOH to license more medical marijuana treatment centers. According to the suit that has been filed, DOH's failure to do so is depr...

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12/26/2017 Comments(0)

Mentally Ill Inmate Gouges Out Own Eyes, Sues Colorado County for Negligence

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On December 7, 2017, a mentally ill inmate in the Boulder, Colorado, jail sued Sheriff Joe Pelle in federal court, claiming that the jail staff failed to stop the man from using his fingers to gouge out his own eyes after several prior attempts to do so. The inmate sued Pelle and 21 other jail employees in U.S. District Court in Denver. He claimed that he blinded himself because they failed to heed war...

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12/22/2017 Comments(0)