Health Information Technology
Addressing the Need for Health Information Technology
The creation of a national health information infrastructure is now a national priority, as patient medical information becomes increasingly complex and scattered across a wide variety of unaffiliated health care providers. In 2004, President Bush called for most Americans to have access to an interoperable electronic health record by the year 2014.
Health information technology (HIT) has become the hope for piecing together a fragmented industry. Numerous initiatives are underway to encourage HIT adoption and improve workflow, patient safety and privacy, and interoperability of HIT across health care systems.
As a result, providers are finding themselves dedicating more time and resources to HIT selection, implementation and mastery. Having the appropriate mechanisms in place to assure that HIT, such as electronic health records (EHR), practice management systems and personal health records (PHR), work to benefit the practice of medicine is key to reaping the benefits of this promising technology.
A Tradition of Heath Care Advocacy
The right legal counsel can help a health care provider in this increasingly complex and ever-changing field. Representation of health care providers has been a bedrock practice at Womble Carlyle for decades. More than 50 of our attorneys regularly work with health care providers in a wide array of fields, including regulatory, antitrust, corporate, tax, public finance, employment, employee benefits, intellectual property, real estate, and litigation matters.
Our attorneys have worked with various hospitals and physician groups acquiring and implementing broad-based, interoperable HIT systems to ensure appropriate contractual protections are in place and that legal compliance obligations with HIPAA and other regulations are met. And, because Womble Carlyle is a full-service law firm, we can assist health care providers with any other legal issues that may arise.
Our Health Information Technology Services
Womble Carlyle's HIT Team stays up to date in this constantly changing area of law and business. Team members assist health care providers with a broad range of HIT issues:
- Purchasing and implementing HIT systems, including EHR, practice management and PHR;
- Addressing the regulatory issues associated with HIT, including privacy and security compliance;
- Implementing agreements for connectivity and data transfer between health care clearinghouses, payers, providers and pharmacies;
- Building strategic alliances for the resale, sublicense, and use of health-related technology;
- Negotiating data release agreements for the sharing of health information;
- Assisting donors and recipients of interoperable EHR with anti-kickback, Stark, and tax compliance;
- Working with government agencies and regulators to better understand the rapidly evolving framework of HIT regulation; and
- Resolving HIT disputes between providers and/or HIT vendors.
Our Clients and Our Approach
Womble Carlyle's HIT Team works with nearly every type of health care provider, including hospitals and health systems, academic medical centers, long-term care facilities, home health providers, multi- and single-specialty physician groups, managed care organizations, independent clinical laboratories, pharmaceutical companies, ambulatory surgery centers, and other providers of outpatient and ancillary care services. Womble Carlyle provides each client with the right attorney at the right rate for the right amount of time to give the provider the best value and the best terms.