Physician Community Podcast

Episode #23: Red Flags Rule - Purpose, Requirements and Compliance in Healthcare


Dr. Marlowe Schaeffer-Polk, attorney, physician and founder of Medlawguard, and Mr. John Steinbach, CPHIMS and co-founder of Medlawguard, a healthcare risk mitigation firm, bring their practical experience and extensive training to the subject of the Federal Red Flags Rule in healthcare. What is the Red Flags Rule?  Who must comply?  How does it relate to HIPAA? You'll know all of this and more after you listen. Dr. Schaeffer-Polk and Mr. Steinbach also provide specific examples of healthcare related "red flags." The interview was conducted by Jack Varga, MD, MHSA, CPHIMS, FHIMSS, Physician Informaticist, Veterans Health Administration, Washington, DC.


  • The Red Flags Rule was scheduled to take effect 06/01/2010 but the FTC has extended the enforcement deadline through 12/31/2010. 
  • However, the information in this podcast is very valuable to protect both you and your patients from the threat of identity theft.
  • Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Mark Begich (D-Alaska) have introduced legislation to exempt certain small businesses--including physician, dental and veterinary offices--from the Federal Trade Commission's Red Flags Rule, scheduled to be effective on June 1.
  • May 21, 2010, CHICAGO – The American Medical Association (AMA), American Osteopathic Association (AOA) and the Medical Society of the District of Columbia (MSDC) today filed a suit in federal court seeking to prevent the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) from extending identity theft regulations to physicians. The complaint, prepared by the Litigation Center of the AMA and State Medical Societies, targets the contentious “red flags rule,” which requires creditors to implement safeguards against identity theft. The medical societies charge that the FTC’s rule exceeds the powers delegated to it by Congress and that its application to physicians is “arbitrary, capricious and contrary to the law.”

More information on the Red Flags Rule.