Click Here to download the PDF. Urgent message: As the severity of newer strains of SARS-CoV-2 has decreased, many patients and providers have become less vigilant about COVID-19. Yet COVID-19 remains among the top 10 causes of death in the U.S. Failure to diagnose and, if eligible, treat patients with COVID-19 may result in significant harm. Professional liability is less likely, however, given the current governmental protections in place. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is …Read More
Who Can Take X-Rays in an Urgent Care Center?
Urgent message: Given that x-ray is a differentiating feature of “urgent care” and the current challenges in recruiting and retaining licensed RTs, a logical question for urgent care operators is the extent to which x-ray tasks can be delegated. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is President of Experity Consulting and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. “The only people who can touch an x-ray machine are those who are certified …Read More
What Qualifies Someone to Take X-Rays in the Urgent Care Center? It All Depends on Where You’re Located
X-rays are high on the list of services patients expect urgent care centers to provide when needed. Currently, however, a dearth of qualified technicians can make guaranteeing that they can do so somewhat challenging. The November issue of JUCM will start an in-depth discussion of how the industry can best approach meeting that challenge for the benefit of the patient and the individual operator. One essential part of that discussion will be answering the question …Read More
Avoiding Defamation Lawsuits in Urgent Care
Urgent message: People are unlikely to trust their healthcare to a provider with a sullied reputation, so speaking ill of a provider can cost them in terms of patient revenue or future employment opportunities. Understanding the causes and defenses for defamation can help you protect your reputation and your business. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc We live in a nation where the First Amendment should protect “free speech,” particularly among public figures. Yet, Google “defamation …Read More
Can PAs and NPs Unionize in Urgent Care Settings?
Urgent message: Urgent care’s workforce has changed from primarily emergency physicians to physician assistants and nurse practitioners now making up the bulk of providers. Whereas physicians historically have been excluded from joining a union, recent efforts to organize PAs and NPs have garnered media attention. While just over 10% of U.S. employees belonged to a union in 2019, a number of groups in industries that do not traditionally have a union presence have gone on …Read More
What’s the Best Policy for Unlocking an Urgent Care’s Doors when a Provider isn’t Present?
Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is President of Experity Networks and is Senior Editor, Practice Management of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. Urgent message: Whether an urgent care must have a provider on-site during all operating hours comes down to the operator’s risk tolerance. As a matter of patient safety, many urgent care centers have adopted a policy that if no provider is on-site, they must lock the doors and refuse entry of any …Read More
Considerations for Urgent Care Operators on Equal Pay Legislation and Enforcement
Urgent message: As we see a shift to an overwhelming female workforce in urgent care, it is essential that urgent care operators understand the conditions of, and develop policies to be compliant with, employment laws requiring equal pay among genders. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc, is President of Experity Networks and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. INTRODUCTION Many urgent care centers already pay the same hourly rate for all …Read More
Who in a Company Can Bind the Company in a Contract?
Urgent message: While legal documents may define who in an urgent care is able to legally obligate the company, such as when ordering a service or signing a contract, there are cases where “unauthorized” individuals can still bind the company—meaning the organization must have clear internal policies on signing authority. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc Let’s say that a physician employed at an urgent care facility is working on a Saturday when a toilet backs …Read More
Getting Served: The Do’s and Don’ts of Litigation
Upon returning home from a busy urgent care shift, you notice a certified letter with a law firm’s return address. You open the letter and realize you are being sued in the case of a 26-year-old woman you saw almost a year ago. As your heart beats harder, you think about returning to the urgent care to pull up the chart. You wonder who you should call (the medical director, the insurance company…?) Should you …Read More
Employee Confidentiality Cannot Extend to Employment Terms—Including on Social Media
Urgent message: Nondisclosure agreements that are commonly required of management and providers to protect a company’s business strategies, intellectual property and human capital generally cannot prohibit employees from sharing their own pay, benefits, working conditions, or conditions of employment even on social media. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is President of Experity Networks and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine Many companies expect and even demand confidentiality of proprietary information. …Read More