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Driving ahead without a dashboard?

11 Jul 2014, Posted by Summer Phillips in Uncategorized

“Compliance” is a big word in the healthcare industry, since failure to comply with health standards can lead to fines, lawsuits and worse for the offending facility. That’s why every hospital and ASC should employ a corporate compliance committee to keep them in the clear.

If you’ve never heard of a corporate compliance committee, I’ll tell you that it’s not a new trend and that now is the time to get one in gear for your facility.

Unfortunately, facility leaders don’t like to be bothered with starting another committee, especially when they think it involves new hires or added expenditures. But I assure you—putting this vastly important committee in place is simpler than you think.

Why A Corporate Compliance Committee?

A corporate compliance committee helps your facility follow the annual work plan generated by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) and Department of Health and Human Services (the work plan aims to prevent fraud, waste and abuse in healthcare). In simplest terms, the committee stays on top of new or changing federal regulations, enforces set policies and ensures both ethical treatment and accountability within the facility.
Michael Volkov, a former federal prosecutor, described the corporate compliance committee perfectly: “A compliance committee is like your dashboard on your car, telling you how fast you are going, how much fuel you have, and allowing you to signal others on the road.”

Who Needs to Be Involved?

It’s best to work from within, because your current staff has the best insight for keeping your facility compliant. Build a committee from existing leaders, such as a CFO, health information manager, director of nursing or other supervisory staff, and then appoint an internal auditor or two as well as a Corporate Compliance Officer.
From there, make sure everyone participating in the committee is responsible for only specific aspects of implementation and enforcement, ensuring that no one person becomes overwhelmed with having to be the “corporate compliance expert.”

What’s It Gonna Take?

All useful systems and groups require a little training, and the same is true of your corporate compliance committee. Fraud, waste and abuse compliance training should be completed on an annual basis, and further education materials should be provided through an intranet service or in-person during staff meetings.
Yes, staff meetings. The corporate compliance committee should meet at least once a month and take advantage of the opportunity to share training opportunities, reinforce codes of conduct, address shortcomings throughout the facility and routinely hone the facility’s action plan.

The reality is, you can’t afford to not implement a Corporate Compliance Committee. Just imagine driving without the various dials and indicators on your car’s dashboard—you’d end up on a curb with no gas, get pulled over for speeding or burn out your engine because you didn’t top off the coolant. So let me help you identify the right staff for your committee, and then guide them in assigning tasks, completing training and enforcing policy.

Call or email Jocelyn Gaddie Vice President, Business Development at jgaddie@in2itive.org or 913.344.7837 to learn more about how we can partner with you!

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