Saturday, May 18, 2024

Holiday gift giving

Aaron Laster

Hello List Serv,

A recent topic/ question that has been asked in the office is about gift
giving and receiving at this time of year.

Many of us that have worked at other practices have seen previous
bosses/offices we have worked at drop off holiday/ thank you/ happy new
year gifts to affiliates that are not in O and P. We have seen previous
employers provide wine, snacks, cookies, magnets, fruit, all different
ideas over the years and we never questioned it. Now we got to discussing
and can’t seem to clearly draw the line.

Obviously there are rules/ laws about bribing (sunshine and stark) but it
does not seem incredibly clear to us of where the line is.
1) are you allowed to give a small holiday gift to say a therapist
or doctor/ other?
2) are you allowed to receive a small holiday gift from a therapist?
or other? sales rep?
3) I know you can only give a patient small items under $10 value
but can we have a drawing for a small prize (like a branded bag or
sweatshirt) once a year or so? not talking about anything big like a trip
or money or anything but maybe a marketing style item like a custom leg bag
or duffel bag or a mug?
4) Do the answers to these differ with intent? what if the gift is
with educational material? what if the gift is just small marketing? what
if the item is with a notice of opening a new office or providing a new
5) what about in-services, there are some physicians offices that
will just say “we only allow you to come speak if you provide lunch”?
6) what about the oh so popular videos online of dolls given to look
like the patient with leg or afo or TLSO on? obviously to us we would say
why would we not do something that makes a kid adapt better and feel better
but is this looked at in the same light?
7) what about when a patient wants to see if you will sponsor their
team or their run? this may involve you paying to get your logo on their
8) are you allowed to say provide a doll or duffel bag or whatever
if it isn’t free? what if they pay you say $5 for it (something nominal)?
9) I saw in one place that pharmacology reps weren’t even giving out
pens anymore, is this true and does this apply us? I know recently there
was a post about Rx pads and I would think that would fall in same
category, thoughts?

Thank you very much for any clarification for our office. We don’t want to
have a misunderstanding and say no to a patient or someone if that is just
being overly cautious and we don’t need to. And it gets hard to clarify
what is just marketing and getting your name out and what is looked down on
Whew my head hurts now.

Aaron Laster, office manager


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