The Council of Medical Specialty Societies, a Chicago-based organization that counts among its members 30 medical societies and some 600,000 physicians, has filed a motion to intervene on an existing case that seeks to block the Federal Trade Commission from making doctors follow the same “red flags” rule as banks for preventing, detecting and mitigating identity theft.
Medical council files motion in red-flags case
The original suit was filed in May by the American Medical Association, American Osteopathic Association and Medical Society for the District of Columbia.
Norman Kahn, executive vice president of the council, explained that his organization's motion supports that lawsuit but broadens its scope to include physicians who are not members of the three organizations.
"Since there are hundreds of thousands of physicians who aren't members” of those three organizations, Kahn said, “someone needed to step up for them." He added, "Our motion supports the intent of the AMA position and, if there is a ruling, this makes it so that it covers physicians who are not members of the American Medical Association."
The Litigation Center of the American Medical Association and State Medical Societies prepared the original lawsuit, which seeks to have any ruling cover state medical society members as well. Among the actions the suit requests is to "declare the red-flags rule unlawful and void as applied to the physician members of the medical associations and the state medical societies."
On May 31, the FTC said it would delay enforcement of the rule through Dec. 31 as Congress considers a bill that would exempt physician, attorney and accounting offices with fewer than 20 employees from complying with the rule. In June, the FTC announced that it would not enforce the rule until after the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington reviews a lower court ruling in which the American Bar Association argued successfully against making the red-flags rule apply to legal offices.
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