Health Law Section in Action

Health Law Section Adopts Legislative Position and Advocates for Revisions to Patient Brokering Act  


As many Section members are aware, the Florida Patient Brokering Act was recently amended in such a manner which may have inadvertently raised legal issues as to certain business and contractual arrangements which have been generally accepted as the norm in Florida and upon which health law attorneys frequently render advice on.   In line with the Section’s goal of advocating on behalf of the  common interests of the members, the Health Law Section has chosen to actively advocate in support of legislation to provide the clarity and protection required by health law attorneys to continue rendering effective legal advice to clients on the Patient Brokering Act.    
 


By Special Meeting of the Section’s Executive Council, the Health Law Section of The Florida Bar recently adopted the following legislative position, which was approved by The Florida Bar's Board of Governors at their recent meeting on September 20, 2019. 
 
12. Supports revision of Florida Patient Brokering Act, Section 817.505, Florida Statutes, as amended by HB 369 effective July 1, 2019 to provide clarity as to its application to commonly accepted business arrangements in the health care industry without adversely impacting the intent of HB 369 to strengthen the law. The amendment addresses two parts of the statute. The first clarifies subsection (3)(a) of the statute, which is an exception to the statute’s prohibition for arrangements that are “expressly authorized” under the federal anti-kickback law. The second clarifies the “aiding and abetting” language in the statute as it relates to an attorney’s good faith advice to a client regarding compliance with the statute.
 
The Section’s lobbyists have already met with the legislators in the State Senate and House which sponsored the original amendments - State Senator Gayle Harrell and State Representative Mike Caruso.  Both have expressed a willingness to consider a “glitch bill” to provide the clarity requested by the Section and its members. 
 
Once proposed language is finalized and bill numbers assigned, we will be reaching out and actively seeking the support of Section members to pass the legislation in question.   If you have any questions, comments, or other useful input regarding the Section’s advocacy initiatives on the Patient Brokering Act, please feel free to contact me at everett.wilson@polsinelli.com or Bill Dillon, the chair of the Section’s Ad-Hoc Committee on this issue at wdillon@gunster.com.    
 
Suggestions as to other legislative initiatives are always welcome and should be directed to the Section Program Administrator at eyoung@floridabar.org.  
 
Best,
J. Everett Wilson
Chair, Health Law Section
Polsinelli PC (Polsinelli LLP in California)
Office Managing Partner - Miami
Shareholder, Healthcare Practice Group

The Florida Bar
651 E. Jefferson Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Phone #: 850-561-5650
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