ClickCare Café

Why the Stark Law is Bad for Doctors (and Healthcare Collaboration)

Posted by Lawrence Kerr on Wed, Jul 13, 2016 @ 07:30 AM


You have been there. You look for a better way to collaborate with photos, videos, medical records and conversation. You decide the price is right. You look forward to making things more efficient and better. You will be glad to decrease readmissions and trips from Long Term Care Home and Skilled Nursing Facility and back again. You are eager to start.

Inurement: a word whispered in the back of your mind. You check with legal. The response: don’t help the patient, don’t help the institution, don’t help the provider. Better to look the other way while HIPAA laws are broken left and right.

An unintended consequence of legislation usually called the Stark Law, authored by Rep. Stark of California was to make sure that compensation could not be hidden and that competition was fare. The common case was low rent in exchange for exclusive admissions.

It is increasingly well documented, and increasingly being made obvious by various government entities, that value based healthcare requires sharing of revenue and risk. If a hospital or a physician buys iClickCare for its great advantage and gives it to non salaried by loyal referral sources -- suddenly these legal issues make that look like a "kickback."

Both the US Senate and the American Hospital Association see this interpretation as a big problem and have written about the need for improvement. We thank FierceHealthcare for bringing these recent statements to our attention. We are often frustrated by this as we work to empower providers to take care of patients.

Should you wait? We advise providers not to, because the costs related to poor care coordination and HIPAA compliance issues are just too high to not take action. As for Stark, we can support you in creating different arrangements to keep you legal from Stark and HIPAA -- at the same time.


ClickCare Quick Guide to HIPAA Checklist and Toolkit


Tags: HIPAA, HIPAA Collaboration, healthcare collaboration, regulatory issues

Subscribe By Email

Recent Posts

Posts by Topic

see all