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Scripts Newsletter October 2014
Legal Updates for the health care community

9.24.2014

In This Issue

Health Care Decisions—Who Decides? Like most states, North Carolina recognizes a person's fundamental right to make his or her own health care decisions. Sometimes, however, it is not possible for a patient to make or communicate a health care decision. A patient may be unconscious, comatose, or otherwise incapable of making or communicating a health care decision. In these situations, North Carolina law has clarified who can consent to medical treatment for those patients who cannot make or communicate their own decisions.

Medical Software Licensing — Tips from the Trenches Medical offices are adopting complex software products such as electronic health record (EHR) systems and practice management systems in increasing numbers. While the ultimate hope is to improve patient care and practice efficiencies (and qualify for governmental incentives), short-term results for many practices do not meet expectations. A 2013 survey by the American College of Physicians, for instance, found that user satisfaction with EHR systems fell by 12 percentage points between 2010 and 2012. In some cases medical practices have discontinued use of unsatisfactory software systems and even initiated lawsuits against vendors, alleging that the software was defective or the vendors misled them about its capabilities.

An Ounce of Prevention — The Importance of Periodic Corporate Audits Most, if not all, health care providers operate their businesses in an entity form, such as a corporation or limited liability company (LLC). Many use multiple entities—for example, one entity to own the real estate (or a separate entity to own each parcel of real estate) and another to operate the business. 

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