The bars slammed shut behind the doctor.
All he did was order an implantable device for his patient — the device came from a physician owned distributorship, or “POD,” in which he held an ownership interest.
On July 26, 2013, the Wall Street Journal ran a page 1 story on a surgeon from Ventura County, California. He’s under investigation for improper self referral in connection with his interest in a POD. The facts of this doctor’s story are complicated, but the take home point for you is that the viewpoint of the article is indignation that a physician would have an interest in a device.
But where’s the indignation over a hospital having an interest in referrals from its facility to physicians employed by it? Where’s the indignation over a hospital having an interest in referrals from one employed physician to another?
Yes, I’m aware of Stark and I’m aware of states’ companion statues. That’s the point.
Why indignation for self interest in one situation but not in its functional equivalent?
There are reasons. And then there is the real reason. So what’s the real reason?
Comment or contact me if you’d like to discuss this post.
Mark F. Weiss