Arsip Tag: Health Care Industry

What Laws Govern The Health Care Industry

– Health care professionals face more regulation than almost any other industry in the United States. They are subject to inspection, review, reporting requirements, and enforcement actions by the alphabet soup of state and federal agencies, and they must follow a wide variety of local, state, and federal regulations. Below we discuss some of the more important laws that govern the healthcare industry. If you have regulatory or other health care legal issues, contact a knowledgeable California health care attorney for advice and representation.

What Laws Govern The Health Care Industry



The federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) was originally passed to protect healthcare for workers between jobs. These days, HIPAA is most directly related to the protection of patient confidential health care information. HIPAA outlines how medical professionals can store, use, and disseminate patient health care information and provides civil and criminal penalties for violations.


Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH), which was legalized in 2009, is often referred to as the “gear” of HIPAA. It mandates the audit of healthcare providers to ensure they comply with HIPAA privacy and security requirements. The law sets high standards for information security, provides financial security and penalties for healthcare providers and related businesses to encourage them to adequately protect patient information.


The Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA), enacted in 1986, is a federal law that requires hospitals to provide stabilization and treatment for anyone who comes to an emergency department, regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay.

Fraud and Abuse Laws

Healthcare providers are subject to a variety of federal and state laws that prohibit fraud and abuse. Healthcare providers cannot issue fraudulent bills to private insurance companies or government insurance providers such as Medicare. They also may not prescribe or recommend unnecessary procedures or medications to generate more funds or to get a kickback from a distributor, they may not conduct money laundering, and they may not otherwise engage in acts of fraud or abuse.

These are just a few areas of regulation faced by healthcare officials. If you have a question about your legal obligations or the compliance requirements for your practice, if you are facing an audit, or if you are dealing with allegations of fraud or abuse, call a seasoned healthcare lawyer for help.