ABA Health eSource - Your link to the ABA's Health Law Section
November 2009 Volume 6 Number 3
Health Law Section News  November 4, 2009

November 4, 2009
Are Your Clients Prepared for the Flu?

Interest Group Communication Highlights

Latest Resources & News

HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG)

For more Resources
and News
click here.


The ABA Health Law Section proudly announces the
Breast Cancer Legal Advocacy Workshop Toolkit
New BNA Products
CDC Public Health Law News

CDC Newsletter is a free electronic newsletter published monthly by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Public Health Law Program


Chair's Column
By David W. Hilgers, Brown McCarroll, L.L.P., Austin, TX

Most of the members of the Health Law Section are aware of the education and publication services that we provide our members. However, the Section also carries out its responsibility to establish and nurture legal programs that benefit the general public. I first became personally acquainted with one of the programs that we sponsor – Medical-Legal Partnerships (MLP) – when Texas RioGrande Legal Aid established such a partnership with the Medical School at the University of Texas San Antonio. However, Charity Scott, our Council member who is also a professor at Georgia State University Law School, has long been involved with the MLP programs and is an important element in the development of these partnerships between medical schools and law schools. The story of MLP’s development is a tribute to the commitment of many people to improving the general health of the public.

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Electronic Medical Records:
Current and Future Challenges

By Gary Gechlik, MD., J.D, San Jose, CA

As electronic documentation advances, healthcare providers will face new challenges. Electronic documentation offers many solutions for healthcare providers. The solutions include timely and transparent documentation. Traditional errors such as legibility of prescriptions are likely to disappear. Real time access to the records will likely improve some aspects of healthcare delivery. However, these systemic improvements will come with some social costs. These hidden costs will likely be ignored initially. Electronic documentation changes social relationships. Understanding these complex social relationships helps explain the difficulty in universally adopting electronic medical records.

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Intellectual Property Issues in the Healthcare Context: Are Patient Lists Trade Secrets?

By Don A. Hernandez and Cynthia M. Reed of Hernandez Schaedel & Olson, LLP, Pasadena, CA

Healthcare is provided by medical professionals, often for humanitarian goals. Yet, healthcare is simultaneously an industry grappling with the same concerns of any business, including protection of valuable intellectual property as physicians enter and leave practices in advance of their own careers. This article addresses the issue of whether “patient lists” can be protected as “trade secrets,” and, if so, who owns them. The issue arises most often when a departing physician leaves a practice and takes with her or him the patient list, most commonly for competition purposes. Although jurisdictions differ in their answers, there is both precedent and a sound analytical framework for protecting patient lists as trade secrets of the medical group or employer.

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WANTED: Authors for Health Law Section Publications

The ABA Health Law Section offers the opportunity for members to be published in one of the Section’s publications. The benefits of writing for Health Law Section publications include the ability to reach over 9,000 lawyers that are interested in health law, the opportunity to educate colleagues and others, and recognition as a knowledgeable author in the field. This is invaluable, especially during the current economic turmoil.

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Did you know membership in an interest group is FREE with your Health Law Section membership?

Did you know your membership in the ABA Health Law Section qualifies you for free membership in up to three interest groups of your choice? Interest groups, which are comprised of twelve practices areas within health law, make significant contributions to the Section's programming, publications and legislative initiatives. The interest groups also provide an excellent opportunity for you to interact with and have access to some of the most outstanding lawyers in the legal community. You can enroll on our webpage by clicking here. If you have any questions or need more information, please contact Simeon Carson at Simeon.Carson@americanbar.org.

Healthcare Litigation and Risk Management Interest Group

The Healthcare Litigation and Risk Management Interest Group examines areas in healthcare related litigation and the continuum of liability control.

The IG is led by Chair R. Jeffrey Layne, Fulbright & Jaworski LLP, Austin, TX and Vice-Chairs Joel M. Androphy, Berg & Androphy, Houston, TX; Marlene S. Garvis, Jardine Logan & O'Brien PLLP, Lake Elmo, MN; Walter Johnson, Watkins & Eager PLLC, Jackson, MS and John Howard McEniry IV, Haskell Slaughter Young & Rediker, LLC, Birmingham, AL.

If you would like to join the Interest Group, continue by clicking the following link: Health Law Section IG Sign-up Form.

ABA eSource Editorial Board

The ABA Health eSource Editorial Board is led by Chair Lisa Genecov, Locke Lord Bissell and Liddell LLP, Dallas, TX and editorial board members Michael E. Clark, Hamel Bowers & Clark LLP, Houston, TX; Adrienne Dresevic, The Health Law Partners, PC, Southfield, MI; Marla Durben Hirsch, Potomac, MD and Conrad Meyer, Chaffe McCall, LLP, New Orleans, LA.

Do you want to communicate your ideas to thousands of other members? To contribute a newsletter article on a health law topic, send us your ideas to Simeon.Carson@americanbar.org
The opinions expressed are those of the authors and shall not be construed to represent the policies or positions of the ABA or the ABA Health Law Section.
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