Every state has legal rules that restrict practice boundaries (scope of practice) for non-medical health care professionals, such as acupuncturists, chiropractors, nurses and psychologists. Practitioners and health care entities have to ensure they do not run afoul of these scope of practice legal rules. Our complementary and alternative attorneys and integrative medicine lawyers advise a variety of health care providers and business entities concerning compliance with credentialing, licensure and scope of practice rules.

Some states, such as New York, spell out clearly who can offer health care practices and the legal definitions for and boundaries of these practices. Other states have more amorphous legal definitions. Some states, such as California, have medical freedom laws that allow non-licensed healers to provide services. Such states still have prohibitions though on the unlicensed practice of medicine, and it takes careful drafting to create appropriate office policies and forms for practitioners.

Our law firm has represented and given legal advice to a broad array of health care practitioners, including:

  • Acupuncturists and Doctors of Traditional Oriental Medicine
  • Chiropractors
  • Energy Healers and Shamans
  • Homeopaths and Homeopathic Physicians
  • Integrative Medicine Centers
  • Massage Therapists, Bodyworkers, and Somatic Practitioners
  • Naturopathic Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Physicians (MDs and DOs)
  • Practitioners of Ayurvedic Medicine
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists and other mental health counselors
  • Spiritual Healing Practitioners
  • Yoga Teachers and Yoga Studios

We will address many legal issues of concerns to our clients, including:

  • unlicensed medical practice
  • malpractice
  • professional discipline
  • informed consent
  • scope of practice
  • practice guidelines
  • disclosure and other legal requirements pertaining to non-licensed CAM and other health law professionals; and
  • other health care legal issues.

In addition, our health care and business law attorneys advice on legal issues for in specialty areas such as:

  • Anti-Aging Medicine
  • Functional Medicine
  • Imaging Centers
  • Independent Diagnostic Testing Facilities (IDTFs)
  • Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)
  • Medical Tourism
  • Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation (PM&R)
  • Rehabilitation Medicine
  • Sleep Medicine
  • HCG for Weight Loss

Our legal team understands these niche practice areas and the importance of focusing legal attention on the relevant issues. For example, the IOP typically includes a half-day of treatment (for treat mental health conditions or substance abuse disorders), as an initial point of entry into care, as a step up from less intensive outpatient services, or as a step down from acute inpatient, residential care or a partial hospitalization program (PHP). Creating an IOP outside the typical hospital setting can involve legal issues including:

  • Corporate (and unlicensed) practice of medicine
  • Corporate (and unlicensed) practice of nutrition or dietetics
  • Corporate (and unlicensed) practice of psychology
  • Employment Issues
  • Fictitious name permit
  • HIPAA
  • Liability (negligence)
  • Management (MSO) Agreement
  • Professional Liability Insurance
  • Rules governing professional corporations
  • Self-referral, anti-kickback, an fee-splitting concerns
  • Staffing & Scope of practice limitations on providers
  • Standard of care
  • Third-party insurance reimbursement

Our legal and regulatory advice is geared not only toward malpractice liability risk prevention and management, but also toward medical board defense and prevention or mitigation of professional discipline, and management of risks related to other enforcement activity.