Hurricane Ian has impacted many people in Southwest Florida including members of the physician community. Fortunately, in the face of adversity, our community comes together. As a result of the hurricane, some physician offices have been damaged to an extent that they will require considerable repairs in order to reopen. While these displaced physicians are repairing, rebuilding or seeking new space, their patients still need them. Other physicians were fortunate and avoided damage. They may have some available space, even if only on a limited schedule, and may desire to help a displaced physician by letting them use it. That is commendable. However, before doing so both physicians should ensure that they are protected. There are numerous issues that should be addressed and reflected in a written contract including:
· Landlord consent;
· Federal and Florida anti-kickback and referral laws (including Stark);
· Malpractice and business liability insurance; and,
· Other terms to protect both parties.
This brief article does not address all issues that must be considered by the physicians to ensure that both parties are protected. If you are a physician considering helping a displaced physician with space use, it is best to contact an attorney to advise you and draft a contract to protect you.
For additional assistance, contact Linda R. Minck, Attorney at Law, at email@example.com.