Tech Talk: HIT News of Note MEDHOST Launches Order Management Solution Committed to giving physicians technology that fits their existing processes and is easy to use, the MEDHOST Physician Experience has been enhanced with the launch of a unique Order Management solution. The new application streamlines the chart, note and order functionality with a contemporary and intuitive user interface that is designed to drive rapid physician adoption. Physician Order Management is part of the continuous MEDHOST Physician Experience. This one-of-a-kind clinical suite is designed with the objective to provide improved experience in natural workflow for physicians, enhance patient care and safety, create more efficient enterprise-wide processes and improve financial performance, while allowing meaningful use requirements to be met. Core elements include: Chart: Fully integrated into physician experience with note and order management, the patient chart streamlines the display of information. Chart uses diagrams like the fishbone display so clinicians can quickly review, enter and update clinical data. Note: The cornerstone and original physician experience component, note empowers clinicians to enter the context of a patient’s record and to view a list of all notes for the patient’s current and any previous encounter. Order: Enhanced order management’s intuitive workspace allows physicians to easily modify, suspend, discontinue or reorder existing orders or select new orders, including order sets, which they can customize for the needs of the individual patients. Physicians can select the relevant orders as well as modify the orders in real time based on the patient’s status. Healthspek Expands Service with Insurance Finder The developers of Nashville-based personal health management platform Healthspek recently announced the addition of Insurance Finder, a free service to aid consumers in researching and finding trusted health and life insurance agents by location. As an award-winning platform for individuals and families to track, collect and safely disseminate personal healthcare information, Healthspek utilizes healthcare technology to improve patient experience. Dozens of “speks” allow users to own and manage a variety of relevant healthcare needs from vitals and charts to resources on medical conditions and medication reminders. The platform also serves as a repository for legal documents, and now Insurance Finder is now available to all Healthspek account holders on the user-configurable dashboard. “The dashboard is like a virtual services mall that allows you to consolidate all of your healthcare information and access relevant services in one place. We’re constantly thinking of ways to grow the dashboard, and Insurance Finder is one result of that,” said Randy Farr, co-founder and CEO of Healthspek. Once in Insurance Finder, the new feature pinpoints a user’s location and pulls up the profiles and contact information of recommended health and life insurance agents in that area. Users can also run searches by zip code to find trusted agents recommended by Healthspek across the nation.
Maximizing Protection of Assets from Lawsuits By LAUREN LAW OSCHMAN
Practicing medicine is a highly litigious profession. In fact, a study published by the New England Journal of Medicine found that a staggering 99 percent of physicians in high-risk specialties would be sued by the age of 65. Fortunately, you can defend many of your assets from potential lawsuits by following a risk management model that will systematically title your property in an advantageous way. Carefully constructed asset protection strategies that are fully implemented before any hint of trouble are more likely to be effective in warding off potential lawsuits or reducing the settlement amount. Having your end goal in mind is extremely helpful when developing a solid plan of protection. The first step is to assess where you are today from a risk standpoint and how that falls short from your preferred state of protection.
Lasting Implications Asset protection plays a critical role in many different aspects of your financial plan. If you’re starting a practice, you’ll need to recognize the implications your business plan will have on your estate … or if you’re developing an estate plan, you need to assess what ramifications those strategies will have on your practice. Ideally, these methods will also be set up in a way that reduces your tax obligations and allows your heirs to avoid the process of probate. A carefully drafted risk management plan that exempts your assets and business from liability claims will make you a less viable target for a lawsuit. However, assets that are legally exempt from creditors can vary widely from state-to-state on a case-by-case basis. Because every state has different laws to consider, it’s recommended that you partner with an attorney who is familiar with your state’s asset protection laws and case history. Timing is everything when it comes to risk management. Asset protection strategies are only truly effective if done proactively. A reactive approach to risk management likely won’t be able to keep your assets safe. Asset protection is about preventing wealth erosion – it’s not about trying to defraud or evade taxes. Titles Matter When purchasing a home, it’s important to title it so that you won’t be vulnerable to unmerited lawsuits while still allowing you to deduct the interest on your mortgage. While some lenders will require you to hold the title in your personal name, some states do not. Certain states offer asset protection for houses held in joint tenancy with a spouse. How-
ever, this strategy only works if your spouse is not party to the lawsuit. In other states, owning your home as tenants by the entirety might be more beneficial than joint tenancy. Transferring the title to your spouse, a trust owned/settled by your spouse, or an LLC owned by your spouse’s trust might offer superior protection in some circumstances. When purchasing the facility where you want your medical practice to be located, many of these same issues apply. You have to decide whether you want to put that property in your name, or in the form of an LLC that you co-own with your spouse. If you have a partner, there should probably be a buy-sell agreement in place that stipulates what would happen to the practice and its real estate in the event of a death or disability. For planning purposes, you’ll want to look at your complete list of assets and classify them as: • Practice operating assets, • Practice capital assets, • Individual investments, or • Personal assets. Once your assets are classified, the next step is to build legal walls between your investment and personal assets so that they’re not on the table in the event of a liability. Incorporating your practice normally protects your personal assets from non-malpractice claims against the practice. By doing this, only a portion of your assets would be vulnerable if the liability is limited to wherever the incident occurred.
Oversight is Critical When implementing an asset protection plan, the involvement of several different professionals from a variety of different disciplines is required. The services of an attorney, accountant, insurance agent and mortgage professional might all be necessary at some point, and coordinating their efforts is not always an easy task. It’s critical to work with professionals that have a fiduciary responsibility and are personally familiar with your values and objectives. Asset protection is an area of wealth management that affluent physicians can’t afford to ignore. A risk exposure analysis will allow you to determine which personal and practice assets could be vulnerable and implement proactive strategies to protect them. This article was written by Larson Financial Group, LLC and provided courtesy of Lauren Law Oschman, a financial advisor in the Nashville office. Advisory Services are offered through Larson Financial Group, LLC, a Registered Investment Advisor. Securities are offered through Larson Financial Securities, LLC, Member FINRA/SIPC.