Various regulatory and compliance issues that dictate how health care professionals conduct themselves standardize the healthcare industry. According to Goodman and Norbeck (2013), the healthcare sector is turning into an industry focused on regulatory compliance, as opposed to patient care. Some of the top issues that may keep me worrying relates to compliance with employment laws. Employment laws bring about two main issues. The first entails work shifts and compensations while the second one revolves around occupation health and safety among the employees.
The issue of work shifts is a sensitive area that must be handled with utmost care since working in the health care sector incorporates working at night. As such, employers should manage night and shift to conform to legislation as well as prevent fatigue and any illnesses that may arise among employees (Health & Safety Authority, 2012). There are different types of work-shift with variations in the number of shifts, shift duration, rest periods between days off and shifts and shift rotation. While allocating a shift, risk assessment and control measures must be embraced. The practice will minimize all the possible adverse effects arising from a given shift-work and pattern. This may give me sleepless nights due to the fear of legal action by disgruntled employees.
With the increased automation of activities and the incorporation of technology in the health sector, security breaches pose the major issue of regulatory compliance. Health care organizations are obliged to safeguard the confidentiality and privacy of patient information. For instance, information leaks about famous personalities may attract serious ramifications for the health care organization such as lawsuits and tarnishing its reputation. For Kwon and Johnson (2013) securing protected health data and information is a crucial responsibility of every health care organization. As such, maintaining confidentiality and privacy of patient records may give health care professionals many sleepless nights.
Occupation safety is another issue that may give a person numerous sleepless nights. This is because employees often face several work-related hazards in the course of performing their duties. As a result, the government has instituted various agencies such as the Occupation Safety and Health Administration to protect the safety, health, and welfare of employees by fostering a conducive and healthy work environment. The Occupation Safety and Health Act, enacted by the U.S. Congress in 1970 regulate the agency (Occupational Safety and Health Administration, n.d). According to Bailey et al. (2008), the Act strives to ensure that no worker suffers from material impairment of functional or health capacity from a lifespan of occupational exposure. Workers in the health sector are often faced with occupational hazards such as pricking by needles, which exposes them to contagious diseases. As such, I must always ensure that all workers are protected from this risk.
In conclusion, all workers in the health sector abide by the laws and regulations dictating health practice. This protects the organizations from facing legal action that may result in protracted lawsuits and tarnish the organization's reputation. For instance, the issue of work shifts poses issues depending on the shift duration, time off after shifts and the number of shifts accorded to one person. Disgruntled employees who feel discriminated against the allocation of shifts may sue the organization. In addition, the issue of occupational safety poses the greatest threat to the health care organization's reputation. As such, I must always ensure that all employees are protected from work-related hazards that may arise in the course of performing their duties. Lastly, the health organization should always guarantee the safety and confidentiality of the patient's health records.
According to Solomon (2013), regulatory compliance is the biggest pain in the global healthcare supply chain. Counterfeiting and other product-security issues like theft, also pose numerous setbacks to health care professionals. As a professional in this industry, I am tasked with ensuring that the organization receives quality drugs in the right quantities and specification. Failure to do so may subject me to legal action and accusations of mismanagement and fraud.
Health care organizations are subject to the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act. Compliance to this regulation may give me sleepless nights because privacy protection of health records is crucial for success and survival of health organizations. Health care professionals often store sensitive information about their patients, which may tarnish their lives, should it fall into the wrong hands. As such, they should always make data security a top priority. As such, the issue of data security and compliance to the HITECH Act may give someone sleepless nights.
Compliance with Medicare Standards may also give me sleepless nights. Medicare standards entail numerous issues such as clarifications for advanced beneficiary notices among others.
The disposal of large amounts of hazardous waste also poses compliance issues as it relates to both environmental and security issues. Safe and proper disposal of hazardous waste affects the health and welfare of our employees and the public. As such, healthcare professionals may have sleepless nights trying to determine how to dispose these wastes without exposing the public to risk. In conclusion, regulatory and legal compliance poses the greatest pain in the health sector. Health care providers must ensure that counterfeit goods are not sold on their premises while the quality of care provided should be satisfactory. While these regulations and laws seem cumbersome, they serve to protect the interests and welfare of the public.
The term compliance denotes conforming to a given law, rule or policy. Regulatory compliance defines the goal that public agencies seek to realize in their efforts of ensuring that employees are aware of all the laws relevant to their profession. According to Silveira et al. (2012), the increasing number of rules and the need for operational transparency has forced companies to embrace the use of harmonized and consolidated arrangements of compliance controls.
The first regulatory compliance issue that may give me sleepless nights is the regulatory compliance for information security and data leaks. The twenty first century has seen the incorporation of technology in various industries and agencies. The health care sector has also embraced information technology such as the use of electronic health records. This poses numerous security concerns that may tarnish the health organization's reputation as well as make the organization incur litigation costs. I must therefore ensure that all employees follow the health organization's information security policy.
Secondly, health organizations face numerous regulations and policies with regard to data storage. This often presents a challenge for most healthcare organizations, especially where the IT personnel changes over a number of years. Certain compliance regulations oblige that companies archive data for a given period. Should the IT workers change over a certain period, the health organization may lose track of the retrieval process and data storage. This may result in negative repercussions for the organization. The last regulatory and legal compliance issue that may give me sleepless nights is the quality of health care offered by the organization. Disgruntled patients may sue the organization, thus putting us in expensive lawsuits that may reduce our profits and tarnish our name. As such, I must always be informed about the changes in the IT department so that continuity in data storage and retrieval is sustained.
All organizations are bound by the law and professional bodies to adhere to certain regulations. For instance, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) urges businesses to be environmentally conscious in pursuit of their business activities. It is evident that various legal and regulatory compliance issues may arise in the workplace. The top three include labor law compliance, information security, and data storage. Labor laws and compliance issues revolve around work shift and compensations because working in the health care sector incorporates working at night. As such, employers must ensure…