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How Attorneys Can Help Pharmacy Owners In Texas
The regulations and laws covering pharmacies in Texas are complex and extensive. They regularly change. It’s important for pharmacies and dispensaries to be in compliance with all laws designed to protect patients. Keeping current with the changing regulatory environment is easier with professional legal assistance. A pharmacy owner may need to get legal advice on a variety of legal issues.
There are a number of agreements a pharmacy will have to enter into for business. These are employee agreements, vendor agreements, pharmaceutical company agreements and more. All of them are part of managing a pharmacy. As with all things associated with operating a pharmacy, there are many different rules and regulations that must be followed concerning business agreements. Many of these agreements can be complicated and may need to be reviewed by an attorney. This will make certain a pharmacy has their interests protected. In other situations, it possible for an attorney to write such an agreement. This will put the pharmacy in a better position during the negotiation process.
The changes regarding technological advancements, medical advancements, new laws pertaining to the pharmaceutical industry is something a pharmacy needs to comply with to avoid legal problems. It’s essential to be aware of the latest issues that can impact the pharmacy’s daily operation. Since the changing laws and regulations can be complicated, a problem can occur from misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the required change. When this happens, an innocent mistake that was unintentional can result in penalties that can be substantial. An experienced attorney can help avoid such penalties and protect a pharmacy.
Investigations And Audits
At some point when it is operating, a pharmacy will experience an audit and investigation regarding how it handles patients records and more. Attorneys who specialize in this area of the law can help with third-party audit issues, referral relationships, claims reviews, medical necessity, HIPPA investigations and more. It’s important for a pharmacy to have legal counsel when meeting with government officials concerning an audit or investigation. This is an important meeting even if charges have not been filed. Having legal counsel can permit clients to be aware of their rights. It can also help an attorney prepare a resolution for any problems that are identified at the meeting.
Board Of Pharmacy Investigation
There are some very serious penalties that can be brought on a pharmacist resulting from an investigation. There are administrative penalties, probation and in a worst case scenario, a pharmacist can have their license revoked. These are the types of punishments that could make it impossible for a pharmacist to practice their profession and cause them to experience serious personal financial damage.
Texas State Board of Pharmacy
The responsibility for inspecting a pharmacy’s operation, enforcing applicable regulations as well as auditing the distribution of prescription drugs in the state of Texas is the Texas State Board of Pharmacy. Section 565.001 of the Texas Pharmacy Act give the board authority to discipline a pharmacist. An inspection could show the negligent practice of a pharmacy, unprofessional conduct, violation of statutes that cover being a pharmacist, being fraudulent or deceitful, substance abuse, being arrested, charged or convicted of a criminal act and more.
It will begin with a complaint and followed by the Board of Pharmacy concerning alleged violations. When the investigation is finished formal charges may be filed against the pharmacist. An Informal Conference can be requested by the pharmacist to resolve the issues. Should the conference, or any subsequent discussions fail to resolve the issues, an Administrative Hearing could take place to determine discipline. A pharmacist is permitted to have legal representation during this entire process.
Medicaid And Medicare
These are government programs that seem only to become more complex. It is essential for a pharmacist to know and comply with the programs latest regulations. Most pharmacies can be frustrated with the constant changing nature of this government program. Medicaid and Medicare are also the basis for a variety of abuse and fraud allegations against pharmacies in Texas. It’s important to work with knowledgeable legal counsel that has experience protecting pharmacies against false allegations.
Common Legal Issues
An experienced attorney can help a pharmacy when it comes to compliance with Stark laws, HIPPA compliance, Medicare Part D compliance, business agreements and more. Should issues arise, a pharmacist may be required to defend their license and more. Using the services of legal experts can make a difference between resolving a problem and being severely damaged by it.