We do not have a specific checklist but general considerations should include:
- Timely notifications to employees, clients (including rationale for closure, information regarding records, and available resources for finding alternate services), insurance carriers, payors, referring healthcare providers, and any administrative supports, including accountants, attorneys etc.
- Contact with your state licensure board
- Updating your website, if you have one
- Notification to a landlord, if you have one
- A forwarding address
- Secure destruction of any sensitive material
In terms of records, there is also an ethics FAQ (http://www.aota.org/Practice/Ethics/FAQ.aspx) that has a detailed response:
Q: I’m in a private practice. How long do I need to retain my records?
A: The general legal standard for retaining records is 5 years but may vary by state. However, pediatric records must be retained until 7 years after the age of majority (usually age 18, but can vary by state.) States and individual facilities may have more stringent standards for medical record retention, so be sure to check any relevant regulations or policies. The HIPAA privacy regulations require that all medical records, signed consent forms, authorization forms, and other HIPAA-related documentation be retained for a period of 6 years. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) requires patient records for Medicare beneficiaries to be retained for a period of 5 years (see 42CFR482.24 (b)). Medicaid requirements vary by state.
Laws regarding record retention are passed by the state legislature as well as the federal government. You can search your state’s website to find applicable laws or your state’s Department of Health website. You can also contact a lawyer knowledgeable about federal and state medical record laws.
In addition, the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) has published recommended record retention standards, and created summaries of accreditation agency and federal health record retention requirements.