CHICAGO — The American Medical Association (AMA) today announced two new resources for physicians in response to the unique financial and employment challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Know Your Rights: Navigating Physician Employment During COVID-19 Guide (PDF) and Physician Practice Financial Relief Guide (PDF) build on the AMA’s continued efforts to equip physicians and their practices with the latest, up-to-date information and resources necessary to navigate the changing landscape of COVID-19.
“From protecting fair and just working conditions to helping offset financial hardship, the AMA is working to help all physicians who are facing remarkable, unforeseen challenges due to COVID-19,” said AMA President Patrice A. Harris, M.D., M.A. “These timely and topical resources were designed to help physicians focus on what they do best: treat patients and save lives.”
Know Your Rights: Navigating Employment during COVID-19
The Know Your Rights: Navigating Employment During COVID-19 (PDF) guide helps physician employees and contractors of hospitals, health systems and other entities navigate the challenges and unique circumstances presented by COVID-19. It includes strategic, legal, and contractual considerations for physicians dealing with issues such as the financial distress of their employer, changes in clinical service demand, and growing anxiety related to caring for patients diagnosed with COVID-19.
Other topics covered in the guide include:
- An overview of employment law applicable to changes of compensation and services, ranging from information on the application of contract law to employment relationships.
- What to consider when negotiating compensation and other details in connection with continued employment/retention strategies, including attention to what is feasible under new blanket waivers under the Stark law, hazard pay opportunities and others.
- Key issues in connection with exit strategies and packages, including severance/transitional support, waivers of non-compete provisions, non-solicit provisions, divestiture or retention of personal investments (e.g. enterprises / ASCs), and access to resources (EHR, personnel, telehealth technology, etc.).
AMA Physician Practice Financial Relief Guide
The AMA’s new Physician Practice Financial Relief Guide highlights the various options established by the federal government to help physician practices offset the financial impact of COVID-19, including:
- HHS Emergency Funding
- Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans
- Medicare Advanced Payments
- Main Street Business Lending Program
- Payroll Tax-Related Benefits
Many of these programs were enacted into law after significant AMA COVID-19 advocacy with the U.S. Congress and Administration as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and are now being implemented by federal agencies.
Additional information and resources to help physicians navigate the COVID-19 pandemic can be found on the AMA’s COVID-19 Resource Center.
Robert J. Mills
ph: (312) 464-5970
About the American Medical Association
The American Medical Association is the physicians’ powerful ally in patient care. As the only medical association that convenes 190+ state and specialty medical societies and other critical stakeholders, the AMA represents physicians with a unified voice to all key players in health care. The AMA leverages its strength by removing the obstacles that interfere with patient care, leading the charge to prevent chronic disease and confront public health crises and, driving the future of medicine to tackle the biggest challenges in health care.