TCORS EMS Group
Over the years, TCORS has delivered a variety of legal services to Emergency Medical Services (“EMS”) companies including negotiation and preparation of leases and service contracts between the EMS company and its affiliated municipality or fire company, as well as consultation and advice on a range of issues, such as FOIA requests and employment issues.
TCORS is pleased to announce that it has recently teamed with The Holdsworth Group, Inc. for the purpose of delivering a full menu of services to the EMS community across the State of Connecticut. Bob Holdsworth, owner and principal of The Holdsworth Group, Inc. (“THG”) has had a long and distinguished career in virtually every aspect of EMS and is a nationally recognized expert in the EMS field. He began his career as an emergency medical technician and became a licensed paramedic who ran two major ambulance companies. He also organized the paramedic unit for a major Connecticut hospital. In 1988, he founded a company to provide billing services to EMS companies, as well as operational and financial advice.
Together, TCORS and THG will respectively deliver legal services and operational and financial advice to meet the changing needs of EMS organizations. The scope and nature of their respective roles and engagement depends on the nature of the situation and matter on which the EMS company seeks advice and consultation. Sometimes the need is primarily for legal services, sometimes it is more a question of operational issues, and quite often the situation involves a mixture of legal and financial operational considerations where a coordinated approach among the EMS client, TCORS, and THG is invaluable.
TCORS EMS Group provides services in the following areas:
- Corporate: preparation, modification and updating of charters, bylaws, minutes of annual and special meetings and minute books to ensure that the company is in good standing and meeting the requirements of state law.
- Contracts: negotiation and preparation of contracts, including leases, EMS service agreements between the company and municipalities, employment agreements and vendor/supplier agreements.
- Employment and Human Resources: development and review of policy and employee handbooks and manuals, advice regarding new labor and employment laws and other requirements, wage and hour issues, wrongful terminations, and discrimination or harassment claims.
- Compliance: review of contractual reporting requirements, review of nonprofit status and requirements, review or mock audits of Medicaid and Medicare recordkeeping requirements and response to FOIA requests
- Regulatory: representation in proceedings before the Office of Emergency Medical Services and Department of Health, including disciplinary proceedings; licensing of EMS companies or individual paramedics, EMTs, or Emergency Medical Responders; primary service area (“PSA”) and primary service area responders (“PSAR”) proceedings involving alleged performance deficiencies; applications to assign or make changes in a PSAR or for regionalization of services; hearings on alternative local emergency medical services plans and applications for a PSAR; and applications for sale, change of control, or transfer of a PSAR.
- Litigation and Appeals: representation in administrative appeals, trials denovo, and appellate court appeals, including notable experience at the State of Connecticut Supreme Court
- Transactional: mergers, affiliations, sales, or purchases of EMS companies.
In addition to resolution of legal issues that require regular hourly billing arrangements, TCORS has three service packages that may be of interest to EMS companies:
1. Corporate Health Check This service involves a review of (1) charter documents, by-laws, minute book and required corporate resolutions and good standing requirements and (2) human resource and employment practices and manuals, including potential wage and hour issues. The goal is to troubleshoot and identify any potential problem areas before they germinate into real problems. These services usually involve a day at the site of the EMS company. TCORS provides the service for a fixed fee of $1,500. At the end of the day, TCORS will discuss areas of concern with the client, recommend potential corrective actions, and the estimated legal fees that would be involved.
2. A Retainer Agreement that enables an EMS company to have TCORS on standby to respond to legal questions that may arise during the course of operations. Services include telephone consultations and advice, legal research and written memoranda. Under this arrangement, the EMS company pays an annual retainer of $3,000 for 12 hours of TCORS attorney time. Beyond 12 hours, TCORS will bill at normal hourly billing rates discounted by 15%. If more complex or specific matters arise that require an extended engagement, this arrangement also entitles the EMS company to the same discounted hourly rates, thereby providing a sort of legal insurance policy.
3. Revenue Cycle Mock Audit Service Our team can conduct a complete and confidential test of your billing process. This includes a mock Medicare and Medicaid audit. Whether you do billing in-house or through an outsource agency, our review will either give you peace of mind that things are going well, or help you catch and correct issues before a real audit discovers them. Pricing is based on the sample size of the mock audit.
Regardless of the arrangement, TCORS will consult THG, as necessary, for insight into operational, logistical, financial considerations that may bear on the outcome of the legal problem. THG services can include:
- System Design and Improvement: evaluation of service levels and costs, including response time reliability, clinical sophistication, customer satisfaction and economic efficiency.
- Management/Strategic Planning: contract negotiation assistance, customer service support, leadership recruiting and development, teambuilding, and strategic planning.
- Operational Policy Review and Development: review, evaluation, modification and development of policies and procedures that affect and govern management, operations and finances.
- Funding and Reimbursement: evaluation of funding mechanisms, assessment of payer mix, and training on billing and collection practices, including HIPAA.
- Marketing: formation, support or consulting on marketing plans and strategies, public relations, media management, and government relations.
More information on THG services can be obtained by calling Bob Holdsworth at 860-200-0059 or at www.Holdsworth.com.
Where THG involvement is anticipated to be substantial, TCORS and THG will discuss appropriate arrangements with the client to determine whether it is in the best interest of the client to engage THG and/or TCORS directly or whether THG should be engaged through TCORS (perhaps for purposes of protecting and extending the attorney-client privilege to communications between the client, THG, and TCORS), in which event the client retainer agreement with TCORS will spell out the billing arrangements for both TCORS and THG.
Please call Joseph J. Selinger at 860-447-0335 with any questions or to discuss a potential service package, or for any initial consult on any particular legal issues.