FTC Delays 'Red Flags' Rule; Doctors' Lawsuit Continues

The Wall Street Journal's Health Blog reports on the controversy over doctors and the Federal Trade Commission's 'red flags' rule.  

The rule, which have been delayed several times already, "requires businesses offering credit to come up with a written policy for finding, preventing and dealing with identity theft." The rule is now scheduled to be implemented Dec. 31. "The American Bar Association sued last year, saying the law shouldn't apply to lawyers, and a judge agreed. (An FTC appeal is pending.)"

The American Medical Association and two other medical groups sued to exempt physicians as well. "The AMA disagrees with the FTC's characterization as 'creditors' doctors who don't receive payment at the time they provide care. The AMA argues in its suit that not demanding payment at the time services are rendered 'gives a benefit to patients who are often under stress when receiving care,' and ... patients don't always know what they owe at the point of sale because insurance may cover part of it, the suit says" (Hobson, 6/1).

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