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COMPLIANCE

New HHS policy makes your office potentially liable for LGBTQ discrimination

While it doesn’t directly relate to billing and reimbursement, federal civil rights laws have an impact on certain aspects of healthcare operations. These laws ban your office from discriminating on the basis of protected personal characteristics, including sex. So, compliance managers need to be aware that on May 10, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued an important bulletin affecting how the ban on sex discrimination will be enforced from now. Specifically, sex discrimination will go beyond just a person’s sex or gender but also their sexual orientation and/or gender identity. Here’s a rundown of the law and how it might affect your operations. Federal Discrimination Law, 101 The U.S. Civil Rights Act of 1964 makes it illegal to discriminate in different aspects of public activity, including employment and… . . . read more.

ONBOARDING

9 tips for virtual onboarding of new remote employees

Designate someone who will communicate with the new employee in terms of the expectations of their first day, first month, and beyond. Consider assigning the new employee a mentor or ‘buddy’ in their department who will check in regularly and answer any questions. Consider having a representative from upper management meet the new hire. Showing they are valued in the organization will help new employees feel welcomed and motivated. Ensure consistent communication and updates from company leaders. Digitize your onboarding process. Utilize the tools available to you by amalgamating onboarding documents and welcome packages into organized PDF documents that can be easily shared digitally. Arrange to have a laptop configured and shipped to their home in a timely manner, and coordinate secure sharing of any profile logins or passwords. Avoid setting… . . . read more.

Hiring mistakes come at a higher price amid pandemic

A hiring mistake could cost your office more today than it would have a year ago. New research from a global staffing firm shows more than three in four senior managers surveyed (77 per cent) admit to recruiting the wrong candidate for a role, and more than half (56 per cent) said the negative impact is more severe now than it was a year ago. Four months lost on one hiring mistake When it comes to their most recent regrettable hire, senior managers said it took 11 weeks, on average, to realize the person was a poor match and to let them go, and an additional 5 weeks to restaff the role. That’s a total of 16 weeks, or 4 months, of time squandered on a recruiting blunder. Companies have… . . . read more.

HIRING

Prepare behavioral questions for the best interviews

By Paul Edwards  bio Stop us if you’ve heard this job interview cliche before: In the middle of interviewing a candidate, the hiring manager asks, “What is your greatest weakness?” Without missing a beat, the candidate smiles slightly, folds their hands on their knees, and responds “My greatest weakness is that I work too hard.” Ugh! If you’ve ever been in a position to hire in the past—or have ever been interviewed for a job, yourself—it’s enough to make your stomach turn. Implicitly, our professional minds understand that this is a bad interview question. Terrible, really. But what, specifically, makes it a bad interview question? Not only does it put the candidate in the awkward position of having to either lie or speak to a personal shortcoming during an already… . . . read more.

EMPLOYMENT LAW UPDATE

COVID, opioids and payroll taxes on HR radar

By Mike O’Brien bio  Applicants, testing, and screening The EEOC has said you cannot test applicants for COVID-19 until after a conditional job offer. Fine, makes sense. What about taking temperatures? You can take a temperature of visitors to your business/office to make sure they are not bringing COVID-19 with them. In fact, you may have an OSHA duty to do so to protect your workers from the pandemic. What about applicants visiting your office to apply to interview—can you subject them to the same temperature screening as all other visitors? Logic would say yes; but the EEOC guidance says no, you can only take an applicant’s temperature after a conditional job offer. Yet, a visiting applicant with COVID-19 could turn your office into a virus hot spot, thus attracting… . . . read more.

Five reasons you need an employee handbook

By Julie Ellison bio For many employers, the idea of creating an Employee Handbook is overwhelming.  But the importance of having one should outweigh that hesitancy given the peace of mind it can provide you while you are busy running your law firm or business. An Employee Handbook is your roadmap for what your employees can expect from you and what you expect from your employees.  It should be simple, straightforward and relevant.  Not having one in place can create huge headaches that are completely avoidable. Here are five good reasons to have an employee handbook: 1. Handbooks Set Employee Expectations Handbooks allow you to clearly set forth everything from job responsibilities to disciplinary procedures, thus keeping employee expectations consistent with the employer. Experience teaches us that employees are willing to… . . . read more.

COMPLIANCE

Hiring and firing risk factor: careless words

Today’s administrators need to be aware of the casual – albeit well meant – words that are bringing on claims of discrimination. Legal risks of both hiring and firing include careless words, says employment law attorney Donald W. Benson, a partner with Hall Booth Smith in Atlanta. The friendly hiring remark The dangers start with the interview, where a wrong comment can generate a claim no employer ever expects, says Benson. Everybody knows not to ask the obvious questions of “are you married?” or “do you have children?” or “are you planning to have a family in the future?” Yet many an interviewer brings up a discriminatory topic obliquely and unwittingly in an effort to build rapport with a candidate, never thinking about the danger. Remarks such as “we have a… . . . read more.

HIRING

Should you notify applicants they didn’t get the job?

Open positions, especially those advertised, often generate many applications. If your practice is located in a major metropolitan area or…


. . . read more

COMPLIANCE

5 tested ways to make your billing and coding more profitable

The health of your medical practice depends on good quality coding and billing work. One of the most important roles in the medical office that…


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INCREASING PROFITS

21 easy ways to boost practice profitability fast

Simple changes to billing procedures, hiring policies, purchasing, patient relations, and other daily activities can have a positive impact on…


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