COMPLIANCE TIPS

Remember Compliance Risks When Hiring and Firing

Hiring and firing staff are difficult challenges. While there are many factors to consider in making either decision, compliance should be front of mind in each case. First, there are a host of legal issues that arise when beginning and ending employment relationships, most importantly discrimination risks. All decisions must be made based on non-discriminatory reasons rather than based on factors such as age, gender, race, religion or ethnicity. Make sure your interview questions for applicants don’t touch on these issues as well.

Likewise, when you are terminating an employee consider discrimination issues and ensure the reasons for termination are well documented and are distinct from any discriminatory grounds such as the characteristics just mentioned.

Also, consider the hiring and firing processes as an opportunity to review the effectiveness of your health care compliance policies and procedures. For example, when orienting new hires to your compliance programs, use that activity to ensure written compliance policies and procedures match what is actually happening in your operations. If you have to terminate an individual for violations of your compliance policies, examine what gaps allowed violations to happen. If a termination is amicable, you might solicit feedback from your departing employee about their perspective on your compliance programs and where improvement might be needed.

In future issues of G2 Compliance Advisor, we’ll address in more detail specific tips to help you navigate the compliance challenges inherent in hiring and firing staff.

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