FTC identity theft rule takes effect Aug. 1

From American Medical News (7/20/09)

Physicians are facing an Aug. 1 deadline to implement a formal identity theft prevention program under new Federal Trade Commission regulations.

The “red flags” rule requires certain business entities that regularly extend credit to establish a written policy for preventing and responding to signs of identity theft.

The American Medical Association continues to challenge the FTC’s view that physicians should be considered creditors under the regulations. Organized medicine is urging federal policymakers to exclude doctors from the rule over concerns it will unnecessarily burden physician practices, both financially and administratively.

In the meantime, however, physicians are expected to comply. AMA guidance is available online (www.ama-assn.org/ama/no-index/physician-resources/red-flags-rule.shtml).

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