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American Academy of Emergency Medicine

Due Process

Due process is one of the most critical issue facing emergency physicians today. By agreeing to waive their rights to due process when signing contracts with some contract management companies, emergency physicians can unwittingly give their employers the power to terminate them without cause and without notice.


AAEM believes so strongly in the importance of emergency physicians retaining their due process rights that
both the original AAEM Mission Statement and a recently adopted Position Statement address this sensitive issue.

And AAEM isn't alone. Every other hospital-based specialty understands the importance of due process,
embodied by the following policies held by the American Medical Association.


We, the undersigned emergency physicians of this country, believe that due process is fundamental to our ethical mandate to care for our patients without being pressured by administrative or other external influences. We serve as direct advocates for our patients, many of whom go to emergency departments because they are vulnerable due to medical, social or financial issues outside of their control. In some cases, such advocacy may conflict with profit-driven or other non-patient-oriented forces. Therefore, we strongly oppose the contractual trend that allows hospitals or contract holders to terminate physicians without a fair hearing, since this hinders our ability to act at all times in the best interest of our patients.


  • Due Process Rights
    February 8, 2013 - Larry Weiss, MD JD MAAEM FAAEM, Professor of Emergency Medicine and past president of AAEM, discusses the single most important practice right you have as an emergency physician - your right to due process. Dr. Weiss details the definition of "due process," the source of those rights, and makes the case for why you should closely screen your contract for infringements of your due process rights, and obtain proper legal counsel. Intro music by Kämmerer, "Take Left" from the album "Rhodes to Wisdom," powered by JAMENDO.
     
  • Due Process Rights: The Case of a Physician Who Fought Back and Won
    Larry Weiss, MD JD MAAEM FAAEM, Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and past-president of AAEM, interviews Jeffery Lurner, APC, about due process rights in the case of Dr. Chudnovsky v. Chapman Medical Center. They will discuss the highlights of the case, the due process issues called into question, and medical staff bylaws in relation to contract provisions. Mr. Lurner can be contacted for questions at jlurner@email.com. Intro music by Kämmerer, "Take Left" from the album "Rhodes to Wisdom," powered by JAMENDO.
     
  • Key Contract Terms
    Joseph Wood, MD JD MAAEM FAAEM, Vice Chair of Emergency Medicine at Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, and past-president of AAEM, discusses key terms in emergency physician contracts. Dr. Wood outlines contract basics including: termination, employee versus independent contractor status, medical malpractice insurance, and noncompete clauses. Intro music by Kämmerer, "Take Left" from the album "Rhodes to Wisdom," powered by JAMENDO.
     
  • Restrictive Covenants
    Larry Weiss, MD JD MAAEM FAAEM, Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, and past-president of AAEM, discusses restrictive covenants in emergency physician contracts. Dr. Weiss discusses this common problem in emergency physician contracts and details what these covenants typically entail. He outlines the circumstances where a court may enforce a restrictive covenant, and describes how AAEM has directly advocated for individuals subjected to unfair restrictive covenants. Intro music by Kämmerer, "Take Left" from the album "Rhodes to Wisdom," powered by JAMENDO.
     
  • Read Your Contract - It's Dangerous!
    Larry Weiss, MD JD MAAEM FAAEM, Professor of Emergency Medicine and past president of AAEM, discusses the potential dangers of emergency physician contracts. This episode covers what defines a contract, areas of potential concern, employee versus independent contractors, indemnification clauses, and termination. Intro music by Kämmerer, "Take Left" from the album "Rhodes to Wisdom," powered by JAMENDO.