Animals Used for Medical and Support Assistance in the Urgent Care Setting

Urgent message: Urgent care providers must be prepared to address the increasing presence of dogs and other animals used for either support or comfort by patients and/or employees. 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. Introduction Animals used for medical and emotional support assistance are commonly seen in the workplace. This includes dogs that assist those who are visually impaired, service dogs for medical conditions,1 and emotional support dogs for individuals such …
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HIPAA-Compliant Disclosure in Workers’ Compensation

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:  While a workers’ compensation carrier may want to see a patient’s entire medical record, claiming that such is compliant with HIPAA as the “minimum necessary information to get paid,” urgent care providers should reasonably limit the health information released to the “minimum necessary to accomplish the workers’ compensation purpose.”   Introduction The HIPAA Privacy Rule dictates how a covered healthcare provider, such …
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Which Way to Go: The Pros and Cons of 1099 vs W-2 Income for Urgent Care Physicians

Urgent message: To avoid running afoul of labor and tax laws, urgent care operators should understand what constitutes an “independent contractor” vs an “employee” and classify and pay their physicians appropriately. 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. Introduction Many smaller, independent urgent care providers pay their physicians under 1099 arrangements rather than with W-2 income. There are advantages to this practice, such as decreased payroll taxes, workers compensation coverage, malpractice insurance, and …
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Effectively Utilizing 90-Day Probationary Periods for New Employees

Urgent message: A 90-day probationary period suspends the standard employment rules for new employees, enabling them to learn the position, but providing an “out” before the employee becomes too entrenched. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care, LLC and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. Introduction Whenever a company hires a new employee, despite the most sound recruiting and interviewing processes, they’re taking a risk that the individual could be a poor fit. The hiring process is time-consuming and …
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New Rules for Beneficiary Inducements at Urgent Care Centers

Urgent message: Unlike other retail businesses, which commonly provide gift cards and other incentives in marketing or as remediation for unsatisfactory service, urgent care operators must be aware of various statutes prohibiting “inducements” to patients. 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. People in the U.S. love the idea of getting something for nothing. Businesses across the spectrum leverage this to promote their products, attract new customers, and increase sales.1 This tactic …
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