Category: Healthcare Management

National Health Care Decisions Week is April 16th to 22nd
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National Health Care Decisions Week is April 16th to 22nd | Dana Heitz

Who: You, your clients What: National Healthcare Decisions Week When: April 16-22, 2017 Why: Everyone dies How: See an attorney or fill out a DIY Healthcare Proxy form {2:20 minutes to read} I recently worked on a case that resulted from the unexpected death of a 28-year-old. The nearness of death hit home after that—as did the consequences of being unprepared for this inevitability. Then a couple weeks ago, I had minor wrist surgery. During the intake, I was asked if I’d chosen whom I wanted to appoint as decision-maker if I became unable to communicate.

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Understanding the Effects of Memory Loss on Finances
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Understanding the Effects of Memory Loss on Finances | Rebecca Eddy

Failure to pay bills is a common early sign of memory loss; the longer it goes unidentified, the more troublesome credit card companies can be, as they may view erratic payments as a sign of risk. Managing bank accounts online may also prove difficult for those with signs of memory loss, especially since incorrect login attempts will be red flagged.

Janice had a favorite credit card which, because of memory challenges, she did not always pay in a timely way. When she finally brought her account current, the card company summarily canceled her card.

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Connecting With Your Elders: Stories of the Past
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Connecting With Your Elders: Stories of the Past | Rebecca Eddy

Every life is made up of a million stories and experiences. Each ancestor’s life is another chapter in the story of where we came from. So, it’s only natural that more and more people have taken an interest in their story through the study of genealogy. Books, historical documents, and (more recently) websites can help in that study. If our elders are still alive, we can find a unique insight into the more recent chapters of our stories through their living history.

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Terminating Household Employees Tips
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Terminating Household Employees Tips | Rebecca Eddy

Ideally, the dynamics between home employees, clients, and any other caregivers is amicable and beneficial to everyone involved. Unfortunately, there are situations where this is not the case.
Through the terminations for cause of two home health aides, we have learned what procedures are required by law, as well as steps to make the process as efficient and trouble-free as possible.
Client Attitude  
Clients may be reluctant to fire employees, even when they don’t like them and/or are fully aware that the employee is taking advantage of them. The client may also resist termination because of a strong personal bond with the employee or excessive attachment due to loneliness or diminishing cognitive function.

Preparing to Work with Trusts and Estates Attorneys
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Preparing to Work with Trusts and Estates Attorneys | Rebecca Eddy

A trusts & estates (T&E) attorney is an important individual to have on your team of professionals, especially:

  • when preparing and/or updating legal documents, such as a will, power of attorney, and healthcare proxy; or
  • if you are acting as an executor for an estate.
Legal Documents: Working with a T&E attorney is an opportunity to plan for the future—financially and legally—at a time when matters are not pressing. Collaborating with your attorney and financial advisor will help you create a more secure future for yourself and your beneficiaries.

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Unbeknownst to Many, Curmudgeons Day is January 29th!
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Unbeknownst to Many, Curmudgeons Day is January 29th! | Rebecca Eddy

Start every day off with a smile and get it over with.” - W.C. Fields

Curmudgeon’s Day commemorates the birth of renowned curmudgeon W.C. Fields, who built his career on the hardships of his (mostly fictional) past, presented through comedic grumpiness and acerbic wit.

If at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There’s no point in being a damn fool about it.” - W.C. Fields

The word curmudgeon itself does not always have the most positive associations, due largely to a demeanor sometimes identified as “ill-tempered.” Definitions often Include words like bad-tempered, difficult, and cantankerous.

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Getting Organized for the Tax Season
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Getting Organized for the Tax Season | Rebecca Eddy

Does thinking of April 15th put you or your clients in a state of panic? Many accountants send out Tax Organizer booklets in January, but not all clients use them. Some people have alternate systems in place that help them present their accountants with all the necessary information in an organized manner. Regardless of the method, there is value in streamlining the materials sent to accountants, who are most efficient when provided with the tools to do the job: accurate statements about income, expenses, and deductions.

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Communicating with Aging Relatives During the Holidays
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Communicating with Aging Relatives During the Holidays | Rebecca Eddy

The holiday meal is planned. Candles come down from the shelves. Presents are wrapped and cards addressed. We look forward to reconnecting with family. Often, that includes elderly parents, aunts, uncles, and friends. In our work with seniors and their families, we have seen many warm and easy relationships between older and younger family members. But sometimes the two generations have little in common, which can result in long and uncomfortable silences.

A Client Story for Holiday Sharing
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A Client Story for Holiday Sharing | Rebecca Eddy

Bernice sent out holiday cards every year, and they were a big deal: she had a photo of herself in holiday garb and wrote a poem full of wit to go with the photo. The cards were sent to 200 friends and relatives, so there were lots of envelopes to address. As macular degeneration made it more difficult to see, the joy-filled project became a burden.
Then there was the tipping. In New York's large apartment buildings, as many as 20 envelopes needed to be prepared for maintenance staff and doormen.

Supporting Family Caregivers
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Supporting Family Caregivers | Rebecca Eddy

Family caregivers make up the majority of long-term care providers in the United States. Every year more than 65 million Americans make the choice to provide nursing and periodic or continual care for their aging or disabled loved ones. That number is growing as advances in medicine are allowing us to live longer. November is National Family Caregiver’s Month, a time to recognize the amazing efforts of these wonderfully caring people, but also a time to make sure that they, in turn, have the support they need to continue.
One of the greatest things we can do is encourage family caregivers to make themselves a priority. Caregiving can be a rewarding experience, but it is also physically and emotionally demanding, and the natural tendency of most caregivers is to put their own needs last.

Online Fundraising May Affect Medicaid Eligibility
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Online Fundraising May Affect Medicaid Eligibility | Ronald A. Fatoullah

By Ronald A. Fatoullah, Esq. and Yan Lian Kuang-Maoga, Esq.

{2:44 minutes to read} A medical crisis obviously causes emotional strain but often can be a financial burden for the sick and his or her family as well. In this age of technology, many online fundraising methods are available to secure financial support for the individual suffering from an illness. These methods can reach many people very quickly and therefore often result in significant funds being raised. While these fundraising efforts are great options to secure financial support for those affected, such fundraising accounts must be set up properly so as not to affect the medical benefits of the intended beneficiary.

2016 Election: Voting Obstacles and How to Overcome Them
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2016 Election: Voting Obstacles and How to Overcome Them | Rebecca Eddy

{3:35 minutes to read} In a year when every vote counts, how can you help family members, neighbors or friends exercise their right to vote? While many seniors are fully capable of participating without aid or incident, others will need some assistance in order to vote.
Let’s take Julia for example: Can Julia physically get to the voting station? Will she be able to stand in line while waiting to vote? Once there, will she understand how to enter her vote? Does she have any physical limitations that need to be navigated? Can someone help her? Or should she get an absentee ballot?

Make Sure Bills Get Paid!
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Make Sure Bills Get Paid! | Rebecca Eddy

{3:03 minutes to read} Paying bills is a critical part of any routine. Sometimes, things happen and bills go unpaid. Below, we share a few examples:

  • Justine had long-term care insurance, but when she developed Alzheimer's Disease and became confused about bills, her policy lapsed. Without insurance, she doesn’t have the coverage for the aides that she needs.
  • Deborah had her Medicare prescription insurance on autopay, specifically so she wouldn't miss a payment. For some reason, the insurance stopped taking the automatic deductions from her checking account and started sending her bills instead.

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Tips to Prevent Financial Abuse by Home Health Aides
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Tips to Prevent Financial Abuse by Home Health Aides | Rebecca Eddy

{2:49 minutes to read} Home Health Aides are invaluable partners in enabling seniors to stay comfortably and safely in their homes. The vast majority are competent, caring and provide excellent compassionate service. However, there are exceptions. Among the most challenging are aides who gain their client’s trust and affection in order to manipulate the situation for their own benefit.

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Is Funeral PrePlanning Right for Me?
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Is Funeral PrePlanning Right for Me? | Rebecca Eddy

{3:25 minutes to read} Below are a few common situations and resulting questions that seniors and their loved ones encounter:

  • George is getting older in years, and his few heirs don’t have much money. How will they pay for his funeral before George’s money gets put into an estate account?
  • Barry is in hospice at home and his wife is elderly. How can his funeral plans be pre-arranged so that Barry’s wife can be freed up to focus on her family and friends at that time?

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Can Medical Practitioners Be Held Liable To a 3rd Party?
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Can Medical Practitioners Be Held Liable To a 3rd Party? | Stephanie J. Rodin

Earlier this year, the New York Court of Appeals—the state’s highest court—ruled that physicians and healthcare practitioners could be found liable to third parties. In Davis v. South Nassau Communities Hospital, 2015 N.Y. Slip Op. 09229 (December 16, 2015), the court extended a physician’s duty of liability and duty of care.

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What Are the Indicators That a Daily Money Manager Might Be Useful?
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What Are the Indicators That a Daily Money Manager Might Be Useful? | Rebecca Eddy

{2:40 minutes to read} There are many situations in which the services of a Daily Money Manager (DMM) can be beneficial, whether it's dealing with an isolated project or working in a more long-term capacity, but life often has to provide an extra push before people will ask for help. So, what finally inspires people to seek assistance? Here are a few examples:

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Seniors in Cities: Protecting Aging Residents
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Seniors in Cities: Protecting Aging Residents | Rebecca Eddy

{2:50 minutes to read} City dwellers living in multiunit housing have unique challenges. Every building has its own cast of characters, each making lifestyle choices which may or may not affect their neighbors. Nonsmokers may take issue with smokers, particularly those who smoke heavily. Non-pet owners may not appreciate pet owners, especially those who are unable to properly care for or control their pets. Among the many needs and desires of residents that a building manager may juggle, the special concerns specific to aging residents may be the most challenging.

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Is an E-Signature Legally Binding?
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Is an E-Signature Legally Binding? | Stephanie J. Rodin, Esq.

{2:55 minutes to read} With the increase in business conducted electronically, it is now possible to sign documents electronically. Electronic signatures are accepted on more and more documents, thanks to the Uniform Electronic Transaction Act of 1999. But they are not accepted everywhere, and they are not always equal to a physical, original signature.

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Honoring Aging Life Care Professionals!
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Honoring Aging Life Care Professionals! | Rebecca Eddy

{2:50 minutes to read} What does a 97-year-old woman with mild paranoia and beginning stages of dementia, a lonely 86-year-old WWII vet being taken advantage of by a woman who has befriended him, and an 87-year-old forgetful woman hoarding papers in a tiny apartment have in common? They are all Eddy & Schein clients who have benefited personally from the work of Aging Life Care Professionals, also known as Geriatric Care Managers.

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Planning for Life’s Unexpected Turns
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Planning for Life’s Unexpected Turns | Rebecca Eddy

When we are young and fearless, not yet feeling our own mortality, we do very little planning ahead. However, as we grow older and take on greater responsibilities, we begin to address the future differently. We may use that new foresight to develop a retirement plan for when we leave the workforce and create wills to provide for our loved ones when we are gone.  What we often fail to prepare for are circumstances, whether due to an accident, illness, or mental decline, which interfere with our ability to make reasonable decisions and meet our daily needs.

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Subjective vs. Objective Complaints of Pain: What’s the Difference?
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Subjective vs. Objective Complaints of Pain: What’s the Difference? | Evan Schwartz

{4:45 minutes to read} Sometimes insurance companies will require that your subjective complaints of pain be supported by objective evidence. While not legal in all states, there may be a provision in your insurance policy that requires such proof. Insurance law dictates what can and can’t be in an insurance policy. In some jurisdictions, the requirement of objective proof of a subjective complaint of pain is illegal, as it is in New York.

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Long-term Care Insurance: What You Need to Know
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Long-term Care Insurance: What You Need to Know | Evan Schwartz

{4:55 minutes to read} Long-term care insurance is insurance that is available outside of government benefits. It provides the elderly and infirms with various forms of nursing care, home care, and other medical services to assist them as they age. Like many other types of insurance, there are a number of different policy types: Private Individual Private individual long-term care insurance policies are typically more expensive but provide the best benefits.

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The Pitfalls of License Discipline for Healthcare Practitioners
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The Pitfalls of License Discipline for Healthcare Practitioners | Stephanie J. Rodin, Esq.

{4:00 minutes to read} Healthcare practitioners should be careful: What happens with your professional license in one state may affect your existing or future license in another. Many healthcare practitioners have licenses in multiple states. If your license in one state is affected by an action or investigation against you, it’s important to know that there may be reciprocity with other states. While eachstate has their own licensing rules, you may be in breach or there may be implications to other state licenses as well.

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Medicaid and the Undue Hardship Exception
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Medicaid and the Undue Hardship Exception | Ronald A. Fatoullah

By Ronald A. Fatoullah, Esq. and Stacey Meshnick, Esq. {3:51 minutes to read} When an individual in a nursing home applies for Medicaid benefits, the Medicaid agency will examine the applicant’s financial statements to determine if any assets were transferred during the five years prior to application. If assets were transferred to someone other than a spouse or a disabled child for less than fair market value, the agency will impose a period of ineligibility, i.e., a penalty period. The individual will not be eligible for Medicaid benefits and will be required to pay privately until the penalty period expires.

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Long-term Disability — Care and Treatment Appropriate for Your Condition
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Long-term Disability — Care and Treatment Appropriate for Your Condition | Evan Schwartz

{4:00 minutes to read} Most long-term disability policies have provisions which specify that you must be receiving appropriate care and treatment to receive your disability benefits. Long-term disability policies establish this concept through policy language, defining “disability” in a number of ways. For example, 1. Some policies define disability as being unable to perform the material and substantial duties of your regular occupation, and being in the care of a physician.

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Proceed With Caution: What Physicians Need to Know Upon Receipt of a Subpoena
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Proceed With Caution: What Physicians Need to Know Upon Receipt of a Subpoena | Stephanie Rodin

{4:00 minutes to read} Upon receiving a subpoena, an attorney can help physicians proceed properly by providing detailed clarification and explanations while concurrently minimizing precarious errors. Before responding to a subpoena, it is important that physicians are aware of how regulations govern the release of patient information, as well as what circumstances qualify the subpoena as valid and appropriate.

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Websites, Social Media and HIPAA — Do You Know the Requirements?
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Websites, Social Media and HIPAA — Do You Know the Requirements? | Stephanie J. Rodin

{4:40 minutes to read} In this article, I will discuss the requirements for websites & social media to be HIPAA-compliant. As healthcare practitioners already know, the goal of the Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) is to protect the privacy and security of Protected Health Information (PHI). One thing many do not realize is that HIPAA has some very specific rules about how to protect PHI on the Internet.

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My Facebook Page Can Be Used As Evidence?! I Wish Someone Had Told Me!
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My Facebook Page Can Be Used As Evidence?! I Wish Someone Had Told Me! | Stephanie J. Rodin

{3:40 minutes to read} Twitter. Instagram. Facebook. LinkedIn. Public social media sites are prolific, and their use is increasing in our society. Almost everyone has some type of profile on a social media platform. Sharing information has become as commonplace as breathing; however, unlike the latter, the former has imbedded risks. It is important to not only be cognizant, but to also be cautious, of the content that you put on the internet. Under New York law, any statements or photographs that are posted on social media websites may be discoverable and can then be utilized in trials or legal matters brought against healthcare providers or patients.  

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