Can Employers Mandate the COVID-19 Vaccine?

Can Employers Mandate the COVID-19 Vaccine?

Urgent message: Based on precedent, urgent care operators and other employers can mandate the COVID-19 vaccine when available, subject to reasonable accommodation for exemptions, which are limited when an employee’s role is public- or patient-facing. As we strain our eyes to see the light at the end of the tunnel in this pandemic, many urgent care centers will continue to have front office staff, medical assistants, and providers interacting with the public. In fact, research …

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The COVID-19 Pandemic Is Making Burnout Worse for Physicians Already in Crisis

The COVID-19 Pandemic Is Making Burnout Worse for Physicians Already in Crisis

Urgent message: For several years, JUCM has reported on the national crisis of “provider burnout.” New data related to the COVID-19 pandemic indicate a need to revisit the topic. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. No part of the world has been left untouched by the COVID-19 pandemic. Currently, many urgent care centers are in crisis …

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The Hazards of Independent Contractor/Employee Misclassification

The Hazards of Independent Contractor/Employee Misclassification

Urgent message: There are serious and costly consequences for misclassifying employees as independent contractors, even if the employee requests or agrees to do so. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care. With COVID-19 fears or childcare issues requiring more people to consider home-based employment—and with many companies already conditioned to having employees working remotely—circumstances may arise in which executive or administrative personnel seek job flexibility beyond what’s currently offered …

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Does the OSHA General Duty Clause Encompass Psychological or Emotional Injury?

Does the OSHA General Duty Clause Encompass Psychological or Emotional Injury?

Urgent message: Despite tort law and emerging workplace policies validating how sexual harassment, workplace bullying, and toxic gossip can lead to emotional and psychological harm, currently the OSHA General Duty Clause imposes a responsibility only for employers to provide a workplace free of “death and serious physical injury.” Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc The OSHA General Duty Clause, Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act,1 states that an employer must provide each of …

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How to Protect Your Urgent Care’s Reputation from Online Trolls and Social Media Terrorists

How to Protect Your Urgent Care’s Reputation from Online Trolls and Social Media Terrorists

Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. Urgent message: The anonymity of social media enables disgruntled patients, former employees, and/or community members to take out vengeance on an urgent care center through negative reviews and postings, typically out-of-proportion to the actual “offense.” Because of the importance of social media as an advertising and marketing channel, urgent care …

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Update: The Civil Rights Act Applies to LGBTQ Employees; What Does This Mean for Urgent Care Centers?

Update: The Civil Rights Act Applies to LGBTQ Employees; What Does This Mean for Urgent Care Centers?

Urgent message: The United States Supreme Court ruled recently that LGBTQ discrimination is prohibited under the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Urgent care centers may cultivate a tolerant and diverse work environment while protecting themselves against claims of discrimination by adopting and consistently following policies related to hiring, evaluation, promotion, benefits, etc. for all employees. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal …

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That’s Not What Happened! How to Deal with Gaslighting in the Workplace

That’s Not What Happened! How to Deal with Gaslighting in the Workplace

Urgent message: Similar to workplace bullying, sexual harassment, and toxic gossip, gaslighting behaviors result in demoralized workplace cultures, lost business opportunities, and legal liability for urgent care leaders and organizations. Past issues of JUCM have covered the various “axes of workplace evils” including workplace bullying,1 sexual harassment,2 and toxic gossip.3 Not to be mistaken for crude schoolyard behavior, at the heart of these very serious workplace dysfunctions is one person trying to gain an advantage …

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What Are the Reporting Obligations of Urgent Care Centers for COVID-19 Patients?

What Are the Reporting Obligations of Urgent Care Centers for COVID-19 Patients?

Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care and is Practice Management Editor for The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine.  Urgent message: Many patients are deterred from getting a COVID-19 or antibody test because they fear being added to a government “surveillance list” or harassment (tracing) of their “contacts.” While urgent care centers or their third-party labs are required to report individual test results, they can assure patients that datasets …

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Is Four Times a Charm for Walmart (or, Could Walmart Be a Threat to Urgent Care)?

Is Four Times a Charm for Walmart (or, Could Walmart Be a Threat to Urgent Care)?

Urgent message: It’s important for urgent care to watch and learn from Walmart, which has engaged leading retail and strategic consultants to develop “Walmart Health.” However, based on Walmart’s three previous failures to penetrate any significant share of even its own stores with a retail clinic model, skepticism over Walmart’s ability to execute as a healthcare provider is warranted. If Walmart has its way, America’s burgeoning healthcare marketplace is about to get a lot more …

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When Can an Urgent Care Legally ‘Fire’ a Patient?

Urgent message: In light of increasingly frequent reports of urgent care centers “firing” patients for various reasons, clarity is needed as to whether and when it may be legal and appropriate for urgent care to “ban” a patient. The customer is always right. We’ve all heard that saying and perhaps even invoked it in a contentious business situation. But exactly how does this apply to providers and staff in an urgent care?  Background A patient …

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