Corporate Compliance for John Hopkins Hospital

Corporate Compliance for John Hopkins Hospital.

Corporate Compliance for John Hopkins Hospital

Corporate compliance with the state and federal laws is one of the most important functions of an organization since it ensures quality service delivery, protection of the employees as well as the clients. In order to understand the corporate compliance programs in the healthcare sector, a compliance officer from John Hopkins Hospital was contacted via email to shed more light on the corporate compliance of the hospital. To begin with, it emerged that he has over 10 years of experience in the healthcare sector and had demonstrated leadership skills. Moreover, his familiarity with healthcare operations management, quality, assurance, and human resource management were instrumental in his duties. These were in line with the recommendations of the American College of Healthcare Executives (2016). Furthermore, he noted that the main responsibilities in the hospital as a corporate compliance officer were to ensure that the compliance program initiated in 1998 by Office of Inspector General was being implemented effectively (Office of Inspector General, 2016). Additionally, it was his duty to identify the vulnerability of the compliance program and activate corrective measures.

The compliance officer indicated that the hospital had a corporate compliance department that was charged with the responsibility of advising the hospital employees, officers, and contracted workers. The main areas covered by the department included prevention, detection, and correction of violations of the federal, state laws, and the hospital policies by the employees. John Hopkins Hospital adopted the compliance program in 1998 with the primary aim of protecting the employees and clients (John Hopkins Medicine, 2016). Other purposes of the compliance program included preservation of integrity and reputation of John Hopkins Hospital, maintenance of internal control systems, the upholding of ethical medical practice, and promotion of morality in the working environment. These objectives play a crucial role in cultivating a professional organizational culture in which the people work in harmony and are aware of their rights, obligations, and roles in the organization.

The compliance officer identified five essential elements that the hospital uses to implement the compliance policies and regulations. To begin with, he pointed that the hospital has a compliance manual that is accessible in most of the locations. Notably, the compliance manual contains a nutshell description of the program that includes fraud, and anti-kickbacks. It also highlights the objectives of the program as well as the procedures that should be followed in case an investigation is launched. Secondly, the compliance officer’s manual is also available and contains forms, policy documents, as well as the regular reports of the compliance initiatives. These contain guidelines pertaining to issues like employee audits, zero tolerance policies, and annual reports of the board of directors. This ensures that the compliance officer works hand in hand with the compliance committee (Sheeder, Nelson, and Tonn, 2014).

The third element is the code of conduct. All the employees at the hospital are required to commit to the compliance program through signing to ensure that all the service offered at John Hopkins are high quality, ethical, and meet the health standards as required by the federal and state laws. Fourthly, the compliance program also contains a training plan for the new and existing employees at the hospital. This function is mainly aimed at ensuring that the employees identify the weak areas of their practice and ensure that adequate knowledge and skills are attained to reduce the associated risks. The final element in the program is provision for regular audits and monitoring activities. Monitoring and audits are sure ways to ensure that the employees are not negligent or intentionally malicious within the medical practice. Consequently, conflicts are minimized and financial management, as well as quality healthcare services,are held to high standards.

While the compliance program has demonstrated capabilities of ensuring legal and effective operations in the hospital, there were some loopholes identified by the officer. For instance, there were some responsibilities that took precedence over the core function of the office such as staffing and time management. These can be considered to be distractors that increase vulnerability to dubious actions within the organization. Additionally, the officer noted that the reporting frequency between his office and the board of directors was at times troubled since they could not agree on quarterly, half-year, or annual frequency. Nevertheless, there were no operational hitches caused by this mishap.

In order to improve the implementation of the compliance program, it will be prudent for the hospital to streamline the top management communication strategies to ensure that there is a regular reporting frequency. Additionally, it will be prudent to enhance employee education and in-service training to ensure that they are updated on the legal requirements as well as enhance familiarity with advancements in the medical field (Snell, 2015). These will be instrumental in easing the extra burden on the compliance officer and facilitate modest engagements.

 

References

American College of Healthcare Executives. (2016). Position Description: Chief Compliance Officer. Retrieved from http://www.ache.org/newclub/career/comploff.cfm

John Hopkins Medicine.(2016). Corporate Compliance Plan. Retrieved from http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/compliance/forms/jhhs_compliance_plan.pdf

John Hopkins Medicine. (2016). The JHHS Corporate Compliance Department. Retrieved from http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/compliance/index.html

Office of Inspector General.(2016). Compliance Guidance. Retrieved from https://oig.hhs.gov/compliance/compliance-guidance/index.asp

Sheeder, F. E., Nelson, K.,&Tonn, K. L. (2014).Healthcare industry compliance in a shifting world: putting it all together. Venulex Legal Summaries, 2014(Q4), 1-5.

Snell, R. (2015).Having an Effective Compliance Program is not about Being Perfect. Journal of Health Care Compliance, 37-67.

 

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Corporate Compliance for John Hopkins Hospital

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