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COMPLIANCE

Beware these 2 deadly employment law traps

Beware. The government has stepped up its efforts to protect employee rights.
Two areas of particular interest to medical offices are disability discrimination and retaliation against protected activities such as discussing wages and work conditions.
The agencies involved are the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (Americans with Disabilities Act) and the National Labor Relations Board.
But it’s not just an agency audit that the manager needs to be prepared for, says Susana Knutson Gibbons, an employment law attorney with Poyner Spruill in Raleigh, NC.
In the tight economy, employees are taking a…

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INSIGHT

Workplace accusations mean it’s time to investigate

By Steve M. Cohen  bio
In dealing with your office staff, allegations of wrongdoing are never something you can ignore. Whether the charge involves sexual or racial harassment, bullying or something else, they must never be ignored. Never.
Remember, an allegation by itself is neither fact nor fiction. It is simply a statement made by someone within your organization. In many ways, how you handle it can be as important as the facts themselves.
If an employee makes an allegation and is ignored, multiple problems arise. Consider two examples: the first is a charge of sexual harassment and the second a reported safety hazard in…

. . . read more

BLOG

Employee retention: An important art for every office

By Steve M. Cohen  bio
I write so much about widespread employee issues, lawsuits, and “mess management” that I sometimes sound as if I don’t value employees.
The reality is that good employees are a treasure. That’s often especially true in a medical office.
But it’s also worth noting that reports by a national management company found that more than 60 percent of current employees in most organizations plan to leave as soon as they have the opportunity. Imagine if even one-third of your employees suddenly departed and you were faced with the time-consuming and sometimes risky challenge of replacing…

. . . read more

COMPLIANCE

Avoid these 3 deadly employment law traps when hiring or firing

Though every employer knows – or should know – the rules for safe firing, mistakes still happen when it comes to showing an employee the door, says…


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WORKPLACE SAFETY

Employee Safety Briefing: Telecommuting–How to prevent injuries in the home office

Why you need this safety briefing:

If you have telecommuters on your staff, you need to be concerned about their safety when they are working at home. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not require inspections of home offices, but you would be wise to remind your employees about working in a safe environment.

MANAGING THE OFFICE

Editor watches staggering changes in medical office management

By Susan Crawford
Founding Editor
Dear Readers:
Medical Office Manager’s first issue came out in November 1987. And now after 26 years as your editor, I have retired.
This is a good time to look at the issues and conundrums you as manager have faced during all that time and to congratulate you on a job well done.
The changes have been staggering. You have kept up with them all…

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RISK MANAGEMENT

Why you need an employee social networking policy to help protect your practice

THIS STORY WILL HELP YOU … Prevent employee blogging, texting, emailing and other social networking abuse
At least some of your employees are into blogging, tweeting, Facebook and other social networking. What employees do with their free time is their own business.
Or is it?
What about employees who social network during work time? And how about employees whose blogs, tweets and Facebook postings come from home but still do damage to your doctors, patients and practice? As manager, it’s incumbent on you to protect the medical practice from harmful social networking by employees…

. . . read more

COMPLIANCE

Same-sex marriage ruling brings in new legal issues

Plus new emphasis on discrimination
Though it applies only to states where same-sex marriage is legal, the recent Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage warrants attention from managers in all states. For those in Washington, DC, and the 13 states where gay marriage is recognized, there are new employment law requirements. For those in all the other states, the ruling calls for increased emphasis on nondiscrimination.
A matter of two rulings
In a nutshell, the decision, which came down June 26, says that in states where same-sex marriage is recognized…

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YOUR CAREER

For the female manager: to be successful, follow the lead of the men

It’s a sex thing. In the professional world, women tend to undersell themselves.
And the fallout is money. Studies show that women make only 77% of what their male working counterparts earn, and usually earn less even when they have the same job description and same education.
Why? Because men present themselves in a stronger, more complimentary light, says Vickie Milazzo, a legal nurse consultant in Houston who is both a nurse and…

. . . read more

MANAGING THE OFFICE

Keep safe from the Recovery Audit Contractors and the courts by making the corrections correctly

What flaws are the Recovery Audit Contractors searching for in records?
Illegible documentation, incomplete documentation, unidentified providers, wrong dates of service – and evidence of improper corrections.
To help offices stay safe, the government has set out guides for making corrections so the records pass muster with the RACs.
Those same guides will also ensure the records pass muster with a jury should they end.
The definition of correct
For both paper and electronic records, the government says, three principles have to be followed.
  • First, the new information has to identify itself for what it is…

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