Attorneys Pay Heavy Price for Block-Billing

Lawyers are aware of the increasing sensitivity—and hostility—of clients to block-billing: lumping more than one activity into a single time entry.  A new Fifth Circuit decision shows that courts can be equally sensitive—and hostile—to the practice.  The court upheld an award of $739,000 in attorneys’ …

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When Two Belts & Suspenders May Not Be Enough

Boston Children’s Hospital says that when it terminated a research fellow’s employment, he took the laptop he used in his work to a computer forensics company and had all the data, including data owned by the hospital, cloned.  The hospital claims he refused the hospital’s demand to turn it over.  To get …

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There Is Such a Thing as Being Too Careful

According to The New York Times, Medicare may be punishing hospitals—and academic medical centers (AMCs) in particular—for being too careful.  That’s how Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s chief medical officer sees the practical effect of Medicare’s policy of reducing payments to the hospitals with the …

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Not Everyone Wants to Be on TV

It turns out that not everyone wants to be on television.  New York-Presbyterian found that out the hard way. Back in 2011 the hospital allowed a television camera crew inside treatment areas to record footage for the ABC show “NY Med.”  The New York Times quotes a hospital spokesman as saying that the …

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Surgeon Leaps First Hurdle in Antitrust Suit

It could be the Mean Girls sequel we have been anxiously awaiting:  a Napa Valley surgeon alleges that his colleagues and area hospitals ruined his reputation and eliminated his practice in violation of federal antitrust laws.  A California federal district court ruled that his case was plausible enough to …

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Texas-Size Sentences for Texas-Size Medicare Fraud

They do things big in Texas.  The latest example is the punishments being handed out for a Medicare fraud scheme at Riverside General Hospital in Houston. Let’s start with the fraud scheme.  It was Texas-size, too, resulting in a whopping $158 million in false Medicare claims for partial hospitalization …

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