Texas Action Alert: Call your TX House member Now! Yes on CSHB 1013

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CALL YOUR TEXAS HOUSE MEMBER NOW
THE VOTE IS THURSDAY!

Please call and urge your legislator in the Texas House to VOTE YES on CSHB 1013 by Fred Brown. 86 State Representatives have already signed on as authors, co-authors, and joint authors.

You can find your legislator's contact info here: http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/
If you don't know who you legislator is you can find out here: http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/find-your-representative/

CSHB 1013 would end the hurtful anonymous and confidential complaints against physicians.  It would bring long overdue transparency and due process to the Texas Medical Board (TMB).

Unless CSHB 1013 passes, confidential/anonymous complaints against physicians will continue as they have been, causing enormous harm and hardship to physicians and even their patients.  Without accountability, racist, anticompetitive and other hurtful complaints are filed against good physicians to harass them and force them to incur enormous losses.  The bad faith complaints even interfere with patients’ access to care and patient privacy.  It’s long overdue to shine a light on this process.

The U.S. Constitution provides that the accused have the right to know their accuser, the charges against them, and the witnesses against them. Yet these fundamental rights are denied physicians in the TMB complaint process.  These wrongs must be corrected.  Many other professional boards work well without allowing the kind of abuse of confidential/anonymous complaints that the TMB allows.

CSHB 1013, which has already passed out of the Public Health Committee by a resounding 7-2 vote, would end the abuse:

  1. Elimination of confidential and/or anonymous complaints; the accused physician shall receive a copy of the complaint; exempted are patients and their legal representatives.
  2. No more anonymous and/or confidential complaints from pharmaceutical, insurance companies, competitors, disgruntled employees or angry spouses.
  3. Prohibition of conflict of interests by TMB members.
  4. The TMB can use as experts only actively practicing physicians, who review the record with the name of the accused physician withheld.
  5. If requested by the physician and at his expense, the TMB shall record the Informal Settlement Conference (ISC) and maintain the recording as part of the record but may not release it to any third parties. The physician may retain a copy of the audio recording.
  6. The assignment of ISC panel members shall be done randomly unless there is a board member in the same or similar practice that is available to participate.
  7. A reasonable 30 day period for physicians to respond to complaints.
  8. A statute of limitations of 7 years with respect to filing complaints.
  9. Like attorneys, physicians shall be entitled to a right to a jury trial if their license is revoked.
  10. The board shall dispose of a contested case by issuing a final order based on an administrative judge's findings of fact and conclusions of law.

The entire bill is here: http://www.txppr.org/downloads/110404_CSHB_1013.pdf

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