“My given name is Charles B. Koval; I go by Chip. I am board certified by the Florida Bar in Health Law, and I took it the very first time it was offered. You have to have a minimum of five years experience in a given area and show a percentage of your time dedicated to that area, and then you have to pass the examination. I’ve been certified since 1995. It’s the Bar’s way of recognizing and hoping to convey to the public that myself, and others with similar certification, do have experience and expertise and that we have met a certain level of proof being able to evidence that by passing that examination and by continuing to have the experience and continuing education to maintain current knowledge of the different areas of health law.
It is a very broad area of specialization. It can cover things as broad as insurance issues, certificate of need, operational issues, consent, termination of life support, medical licensing issues; whether for nurses, various grades of nurses, CNAs, LPAs, RNs, advanced registered nurse practitioners, physicians, PAs; also just lots and lots of contracts. Working with a large hospital system like I did with Shands, there was everything from the mats that are outside the front door, to $100 million information systems that are issued throughout the system.
I’m trying to focus on North Central Florida, so basically the area north of Orlando, east of Tampa, west of Jacksonville, and up to the state line. I am able to go further than that, but I think that there is a indefinite need for someone with my credentials and experience to provide services in that area. With me joining the firm, there is a broader scope of practices that can be provided to individuals who have already had a really good experience with the firm. I do have some relationships with entities around the state that I hope to be able to introduce others in the firm to them so that they can provide insurance defense services to them as well.
My experience as in-house counsel, I think, translates very well because there are so many different things that change with healthcare on a very rapid basis that you want someone available to you that can review those documents, make sure that you are kept up-to-date on what the current requirements are so that somewhere down the road if something goes awry with that agreement, your worst instance is you’ve got a business transaction; you don’t have a federal regulator chasing you as well.
This firm has an outstanding reputation in this area and with other areas of the state as well. I think it’s going to be a very good opportunity, and I think I can bring things to them and they can help me grow as well.”