Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013
Hospital Practice News
Legal brief filed in support of med staff self-governance
A friend-of-the-court brief filed by the AMA and several other physician organizations supports a court appeal by doctors seeking to re-establish a balance at a Minnesota hospital that allows physicians to protect patients' safety and lets administrators run the hospital effectively.
This balance was upset when the governing board at Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center in Marshall, Minn., unilaterally amended the medical staff's bylaws and took away the medical staff's right to self-govern. The legal brief supports re-establishing the independence of the hospital's medical staff to ensure their right and responsibility to uphold the quality of patient care, without improper interference or control by the hospital's governing board.
Medical staff leaders filed suit alleging the new bylaws strip physicians of "nearly all rights and responsibilities" and give Avera's governing board controlling power in processes that require medical staff direction. However, a Minnesota District Court refused to recognize the medical staff's lawsuit or the contractual nature of the original bylaws.
The brief was led by the Litigation Center of the AMA and State Medical Societies, a legal action coalition consisting of the AMA and medical societies from each state plus the District of Columbia. Other organizations that signed on to the AMA brief include the American Academy of Family Physicians, American Osteopathic Association, Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians, Minnesota Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and Minnesota Medical Association. Read more about the brief.
Next AMA-OMSS quarterly call set for March 5
Register today for the next AMA Organized Medical Staff Section (OMSS) representative quarterly call, which will take place at 8 p.m. Eastern time March 5. An agenda for the call will be available shortly. The topics to be discussed on the call include:
- An update on the next AMA-OMSS Annual Assembly Meeting, which will take place June 13–15 in Chicago.
- A webinar detailing the AMA Principles for Physician Employment, sponsored by the AMA and the American Bar Association.
- An update on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Hospital Medicare Conditions of Participation.
Open seat available on long-term care PTAC
The AMA is seeking nominations for its alternate representative position to the Joint Commission's Professional and Technical Advisory Committee (PTAC) for the long-term care accreditation program.
Committee members serve two-year terms during which time they assist the Joint Commission in the development and refinement of accreditation standards, elements of performance and survey processes. Committee members also provide advice as to the educational needs of accredited programs and their members and offer suggestions concerning the development of new education programs, publications and other media.
Nominations are due March 15. Download a nomination form, which also includes a memo outlining the position from AMA Executive Vice President and CEO James L. Madara, MD.
Contact James DeNuccio of the AMA via email or at (312) 464-5597 is you have questions.
View new education program webcasts on leadership
Learn about physician leadership, ethical leadership and newly integrated medical practices by viewing new webcasts from the AMA Organized Medical Staff Section. Physicians can claim continuing medical education credit in the form of AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ for watching the webcasts. Titles include:
- "Physician leadership during challenging times" (2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ available)
- "Leadership and the AMA Code of Medical Ethics" (1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ available)
- "Lessons learned from newly integrated medical practices: Two case studies" (1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ available)
AMA members can view these webcasts for free; nonmembers can watch them for $30 per credit hour. If you're not an AMA member, join today.
Apply for leadership slots on AMA councils, committees
The AMA is looking to fill open positions on various councils and committees for 2013. Nominations are due by March 15. Visit the AMA's Council and Committee Nominations Web page to view available positions as well as instructions on the nominations process.
The AMA is committed to promoting diversity in every facet of organized medicine and encourages the nomination of qualified women physicians, minority physicians and international medical graduates for AMA positions on councils.
Model conflict management process now available
Joint Commission accreditation standards require the development of a conflict management process to settle disputes between the organized medical staff and the governing body. With that, the AMA offers a model conflict management process that provides guidance for the development of such a process, as well as a process for resolving disputes between the medical executive committee and other members of the medical staff.
Use model code of conduct in medical staff bylaws
The AMA has revised its model code of conduct to reflect recent changes to standards issued by the Joint Commission. This model code of conduct, developed for insertion in medical staff bylaws, aims to assist medical staffs with implementation of a code of conduct in accordance with AMA policy and consistent with the Joint Commission Leadership Standard.
Employed physicians: Look to the AMA for advice
AMA member physicians in contractual relationships with hospitals, health systems and other similar entities can receive personal assistance from the AMA. While the AMA cannot provide legal opinions or representation, it is dedicated to answering questions and providing advice on such topics as contracting, credentialing, peer review, due process and medical staff governance.
AMA members may take advantage of this valuable resource in either of two ways:
- Complete a brief online form, and an AMA expert on physician-hospital/health system relations will contact you to discuss your questions or concerns.
- Contact AMA Member Relations via email or at (800) 262-3211 to arrange a time to discuss your questions or concerns with an AMA expert on physician-hospital/health system relations.
This offer is a benefit of AMA membership. If you're not a member, join today.
New model agreement helps with service line contracts
With service line agreements becoming both more popular and more complex, the AMA offers a new resource to assist physicians and their legal counsel in navigating and negotiating these contracts.