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5221.8900 Disciplinary action; penalties

Subpart 1. Discipline. A health care provider is subject to disciplinary action under Minnesota Statutes, section 176.103, for failure to comply with the requirements in parts 5221.6010 to 5221.6600 or the violation of any of the provisions of Minnesota Statutes, chapter 176, or other rules or orders issued pursuant thereto.

Subp. 2. Complaints. Complaints about professional behavior or services of health care providers relating to noncompliance with established workers' compensation laws, rules, or orders shall be made in writing to the commissioner. The commissioner or a designee shall assist a person in filing a complaint, if necessary. A complaint may be submitted by any person who becomes aware of a violation, including designees of the commissioner, administrative law judges, and presiding officials at judicial proceedings.

Subp. 3. Review and investigation. The commissioner shall investigate all complaints to determine whether there has been a violation of established workers' compensation laws, rules, or orders. The commissioner may refer a matter to another agency that has jurisdiction over the provider's license or conduct, or to an agency that has prosecuting authority in the event of suspected theft or fraud or to a peer review organization for an opinion. Absent suspected theft or fraud, providing treatment outside a parameter set forth in parts 5221.6020 to 5221.6500 shall not in itself result in a referral to a prosecuting authority.

If an investigation indicates that discipline may be warranted, the commissioner shall determine whether the violation involves inappropriate, unnecessary, or excessive treatment, or whether the violation involves other statutes or rules. The commissioner shall take appropriate action according to subpart 6, 7, or 8.

Subp. 4. Cooperation with disciplinary proceedings. A health care provider who is the subject of a complaint investigated by the commissioner under Minnesota Statutes, section 176.103, shall cooperate fully with the investigation. Cooperation includes, but is not limited to, responding fully and promptly to any questions raised by the commissioner relating to the subject of the investigation and providing copies of records, reports, logs, data, and cost information as requested by the commissioner to assist in the investigation. The health care provider shall not charge for services but may charge for the cost of copies of medical records, at the rate set in part 5219.0300, subpart 2, for this investigation. Cooperation includes attending, in person, a meeting scheduled by the commissioner for the purposes of subpart 5. This subpart does not limit the health care provider's right to be represented by an attorney.

Subp. 5. In-person meeting. When conferring with the parties to a complaint is deemed appropriate, the commissioner shall schedule a meeting for the purpose of clarification of issues, obtaining information, instructing parties to the complaint, or for the purpose of resolving disciplinary issues.

Subp. 6. Resolution by instruction or written agreement. The commissioner may resolve a complaint through instruction of a provider, or may enter into stipulated consent agreements regarding discipline with a provider in lieu of initiating a contested case or medical services review board proceeding.

Subp. 7. Inappropriate, unnecessary, or excessive treatment.

A. Except as otherwise provided in subparts 3 and 6, if the suspected violation involves a treatment standard set forth in parts 5221.6020 to 5221.6500 the commissioner must refer the health care provider to the medical services review board for review under Minnesota Statutes, section 176.103, subdivision 2, if:

(1) the situation requires medical expertise in matters beyond the department's general scope;

(2) wherever possible under Minnesota Statutes, chapter 176, a final determination has been made by a workers' compensation presiding official, or provider licensing or registration body that the medical treatment in issue was inappropriate, unnecessary, or excessive; and

(3) a pattern of consistently providing inappropriate, unnecessary, or excessive services exists for three or more employees.

B. Where the medical service review board's report to the commissioner indicates a violation of treatment standards or other inappropriate, unnecessary, or excessive treatment the commissioner shall order a sanction. Sanctions may include, but are not limited to, a warning; a fine of up to $200 per violation; a restriction on providing treatment; requiring preauthorization by the board, the payor, or the commissioner for a plan of treatment; and suspension from receiving compensation for the provision of treatment.

C. Within 30 days of receipt of the order of sanction, the health care provider may request in writing a review by the commissioner of the sanction in accordance with the procedure set forth in Minnesota Statutes, section 176.103, subdivision 2a. Within 30 days following receipt of the compensation judge's decision reviewing the sanction, a provider may petition the workers' compensation court of appeals for review according to the procedures in Minnesota Statutes, section 176.103, subdivision 2a.

Subp. 8. Violations of statutes and rules other than those involving inappropriate, unnecessary, or excessive treatment. If the suspected violation warranting discipline involves a statute or rule other than treatment standards, the commissioner shall initiate a contested case hearing for disciplinary action under Minnesota Statutes, section 176.103, subdivision 3, paragraph (b), and the administrative procedure act in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 14.

A. Upon petition of the commissioner and following receipt of the recommendation of the administrative law judge, the medical services review board may issue a fine of up to $200 for each violation, or disqualify or suspend the health care provider from receiving payment for services, according to Minnesota Statutes, section 176.103, subdivision 3, paragraph (b).

B. Within 30 days after service of the board's decision, a provider may petition the Workers' Compensation Court of Appeals for review according to Minnesota Statutes, section 176.421.

Subp. 9. Penalties. In addition to disciplinary action under subparts 1 to 8, the commissioner may assess a penalty under part 5220.2810 if a health care provider fails to release existing written medical data according to Minnesota Statutes, section 176.138. A penalty may also be assessed under part 5220.2830 and Minnesota Statutes, section 176.231, subdivision 10, if a health care provider fails to provide reports required by part 5221.0410.

Statutory Authority:  MS s 176.103; 176.83

History:  19 SR 1412

Posted:  Oct. 12, 2007

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