Smaller hospitals and surgery centers often use medical director fees. One concern is that there is often not a great deal of effort into determining whether these medical director fees violate the bans on physician self referrals. Each case is different, howver, one case to review is a recent one involving WakeMed Health and Hospitals in North Carolina. OIG alleged that WakeMed paid remuneration to one non-employed medical director in the form of medical director fees.
After WakeMed disclosed conduct to OIG pursuant to its Corporate Integrity Agreement about payment of medical director fees, it agreed on October 26, 2016, to pay $146,235.38 for allegedly violating the Civil Monetary Penalties Law provisions applicable to physician self-referrals and kickbacks.
Before your facility considers whether it should pay a directorship fee or whether as a physician or provider you should receive one, ensure that you have obtained a true legal opinion as to why that payment meets the safe harbor and is within federal and state laws and regulations.
Posted by Tracy Green, Esq.
Green and Associates, Attorneys at Law