Quality, privacy and patients’ rights
The health sector at ScheerSanders Advocaten has extensive expertise in medical-legal matters.
As the in-house legal counsel for numerous healthcare providers, we have comprehensive knowledge of and experience with healthcare and pharmaceutical regulations.
Our advice on health law covers various aspects, including structuring treatment contracts, cooperation and cross-domain cooperation, and quality-related concerns. We also assist you in dealings with the Health and Youth Care Inspectorate, managing document requests, and safeguarding clients’ rights.
Our lawyers contribute ideas and assist you where necessary in disciplinary or civil-law proceedings.
Our specialist health lawyers can assist you in the event of:
- Dutch Healthcare Quality, Complaints and Disputes Act (Wkkgz)
- clients’ rights and the Dutch Medical Treatment Contracts Act (WGBO)
- treatment contracts
- supervision by and reporting to the Health and Youth Care Inspectorate (IGJ)
- incidents and emergencies
- privacy and professional confidentiality
- Dutch Individual Health Care Professions Act (Wet BIG)
- rights of patients who are minors or incapable of informed consent
- records management and access requests
Dutch Healthcare Quality, Complaints and Disputes Act (Wkkgz)
A significant part of the legal obligations imposed on healthcare businesses follows from the Wkkgz. You are required to provide ‘good care’, but what does that entail? You are also obligated to report emergencies to the Health and Youth Care Inspectorate (IGJ) and are required to screen new employees adequately before they can start working with you (duty to verify). The specialists at ScheerSanders Advocaten know the ins and outs of the medical-legal field and are happy to advise you, as a healthcare entrepreneur, about the implications of the Wkkgz.
Clients’ council and the Dutch Medical Treatment Contracts Act (WGBO)
A patient has a wide range of rights in their treatment or support, usually based on the WGBO. Many of these rights are permanent and inalienable. This means they cannot be transferred to anyone else. Some rights are worded generally (good care provision), while others are much more specific, such as the right to access medical records. The lawyers at ScheerSanders give advice to healthcare institutions and entrepreneurs in the healthcare sector on these rights and how to implement them in the administration of your healthcare institution.
Healthcare is ultimately a contract: an arrangement between provider and patient. Usually, this contract is not put down in writing and is informally or orally agreed upon. In most cases, this suffices as many of the ‘rules’ already follow from the law. However, there are situations where we recommend working with written contracts, such as in the cosmetics industry. We often draw up contracts for this industry and thoroughly review the entire legal administration. We give advice on entering into treatment contracts as well as on terminating treatment contracts, as this is not allowed without reason.
Supervision by and reporting to the Health and Youth Care Inspectorate (IGJ)
The Health and Youth Care Inspectorate oversees the quality and safety of healthcare and youth support in the Netherlands. As a healthcare company, you hope that you will not have too much involvement with the inspectorate. If that does happen, ScheerSanders Advocaten is ready to assist you. We support you from start to finish: from informing you of your rights and discussing your position to assisting in interviews and reviewing (and if necessary, challenging) an inspectorate decision. We also give advice on reporting emergencies or if the IGJ must be contacted in the context of the duty to verify.
Incidents and emergencies
Mistakes happen in every field. Healthcare is no exception. ScheerSanders Advocaten regularly gives advice on and litigates about incidents and emergencies. Many healthcare institutions have us on speed dial in case something goes wrong, or to assess together whether something has indeed gone wrong. We analyse, get to the bottom of things, and assess, contribute ideas and give advice. Not just on the ‘what’ but often also on the ‘how’ of informing the patient or family. If necessary, we assist in drafting an emergency report and informing the IGJ.
Privacy and professional confidentiality
Since the GDPR came into effect, all entrepreneurs have had to deal with privacy issues to a greater or lesser extent. Privacy has always been paramount in healthcare, particularly in terms of professional confidentiality. The GDPR has made it more complicated in legal terms. Our lawyers give you advice on the GDPR, the General Data Protection Regulation (Implementation) Act, standards such as NEN7510, but also on confidentiality under the WGBO and the limits to your professional confidentiality.
Dutch Individual Health Care Professions Act (Wet BIG)
A BIG registration is something to be proud of, but also comes with responsibilities. ScheerSanders Advocaten gives advice on your registration and the role of BIG-registered individuals in a healthcare company. We help you with both your registration and reregistration. We also give advice to healthcare companies on restricted activities: what anyone in your company can or cannot do. How can non-BIG-registered individuals still perform restricted activities in compliance with the law? The Dutch Individual Health Care Professions Act plays a significant role, and ScheerSanders Advocaten is happy to assist you.
Rights of patients who are minors or incapable of informed consent
All patients have rights; however, the legal landscape for patients who are minors or incapable of informed consent is often slightly different. The lawyers of ScheerSanders Advocaten contribute ideas as to how to safeguard the rights of these specific patients in your practice. We work with you on a case-by-case basis to identify the rights that apply (‘who decides, parent or child?’) and provide solutions for practical implementation.
Records management and access requests
Care providers are obliged to maintain records correctly. ScheerSanders Advocaten gives advice on the mandatory contents of the record and how it should be structured. In addition, we support healthcare providers in assessing requests for access to medical records, including those from family and/or surviving relatives.
Membership of specialist associations: Association for Health Law (VGR).