Telehealth Laws Across States

Telehealth Laws Across States

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In today’s video, we discuss how a behavioral health therapist might do telehealth across states.

I’m Michael H. Cohen, founding attorney of the Cohen Healthcare Law Group. We help healthcare industry clients just like you navigate healthcare and FDA legal issues so they can launch, or continue to scale, their healthcare ventures.

A client came to us with this scenario.

“I’m a licensed behavioral health provider in State A where I live, as well as States B, C and D where I have an active license.  I plan to ramp up my business while keeping my job as an independent contractor for a local clinic in state A.”

“I want to operate across these different states. I want to be sure I am not soliciting patients from my current clinic as I’d want to avoid getting sued by my current clinic.  I also want to be sure that my contract with the clinic doesn’t prevent me from moonlighting, or operating a side business, and, doesn’t give them ownership over my intellectual property and profits in the new business.

“So I’d like that to be reviewed. I’d like to be sure my telehealth business is in full compliance with the laws of each state in which I plan to operate, and, I’d like to have my forms reviewed as well or drafted – so I’ve got a Notice of Privacy Practices; I know I have to get my Consent forms buffed up; I need a Telehealth Consent; some Office Policies; and I’d like these to work across the states I plan to operate.”

“While I’m at it, let’s talk about HIPAA, the privacy and security of any communications as I plan to do mostly video consults.  Because of COVID-19, I’m not doing anything in person.”

“I’m currently operating under an LLC which my tax accountant set up in my home state. Does the LLC even work?”

“Let’s also talk about my marketing.  I’m paying an outside marketing firm for lead generation, and, what they want to do I charge me a success fee whenever a lead actually calls my office and makes an appointment.  Would that violate any fee-splitting or anti-kickback laws?”

“What about my malpractice insurance – will it cover the activities that I’ve described?”

“Come to think of it, my cousin, a licensed medical doctor, he wants to join my business as a shareholder.  Does that make sense? What are my risks, of course I trust my cousin, but do I really need some kind of agreement and what would it be?  And what about the states where my cousin is not licensed but I am, or I am licensed but he is not, and maybe neither of us is, can we just do health coaching?  When do we form a professional relationship with a customer, and what’s our exposure?”

Believe it or not, this fusillade is typical for a Legal Strategy Session.  We designed the Legal Strategy Session to be typically, the first step to navigate the many legal issues so you can get some preliminary advice, map out what you’re facing, and know what you go to tackle and shackle.

Not everyone has the time, or the energy or the budget to exhaustively cover all of the legal issues 1000%. So the initial Legal Strategy Session is really a great way to start to dive in and get your arms around what you’ve got and what needs to be reviewed and crafted as well as the priority.

So for example, you have questions about telehealth law across states; whether it’s possible to step out of the professional role into “health coaching;” the option of having multiple clinical shareholders, practicing across state lines; insurance, business structure, and also fee-splitting and privacy laws.

We are experts in this territory, we don’t know everything but we definitely speak the language and we can cover a lot of ground when you do a counsel with us.

Again, the Legal Strategy Session is great for an early read, and I’m sure that most people watching this video will benefit to a member of our legal team about that.

Thanks for watching. Here’s to the success of your healthcare venture, we look forward to speaking with you soon.

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