Psychiatric Practice and Managed Care
Protect Your Signature
Psychiatric News
Volume 40 Number 3 page 9-9

Over the years APA's Managed Care Help Line has received a number of calls from members about the misuse of stamps of their signatures at facilities where they work or have worked. APA's Office of Healthcare Systems and Financing has published articles you might have seen warning members that a physician can be held responsible for care provided under his or her signature even if it was provided without the physician's knowledge.

To avoid finding that your signature has been fraudulently used and having to go to court to defend yourself, you might want to follow the straightforward advice of Jackie Melonas, vice president of risk management at PRMS, the APA-endorsed liability insurance program: You should enter into a written agreement concerning the use of your signature. The agreement, signed by you and a representative of the facility where you are employed, should state precisely under what circumstances your signature may be used and specify that upon the termination of your relationship with the facility, the stamp must be either returned to you or destroyed. ▪

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