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Monday, May 24, 2010


Physician groups from around the country filed suit in federal court to prevent the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) from extending identity theft regulations to physicians. Led by the American Medical Association, the complaint (PDF) alleges that the FTC’s application of its “red flags rule” to physicians is “arbitrary, capricious and contrary to the law.” The rule says physicians who regularly bill their patients for services (including billing for copayments and coinsurance) are creditors and must develop and implement written identity theft prevention programs for their practices. The programs must identify and respond to patterns, practices, or specific activities — known as “red flags” — that could indicate identity theft. The Litigation Center of the AMA and State Medical Societies developed and approved the filing of this case. TMA is a founding member of the Litigation Center, and TMA General Counsel Rocky Wilcox is chair of the executive committee.

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