You Need a Strong and Fair Medical Board
A strong and fair Texas Medical Board (TMB) protects your patients, upholds high ethical and professional standards for physicians, helps to preserve Texas’ critical 2003 health care tort reforms, and maintains the professional image of all Texas physicians. Unfortunately, TMB has frequently lacked the resources to do its job right. As a result, obtaining a license took far too long, and egregious cases of physician misconduct went unaddressed. Some physicians complained they were the victims of unfair prosecution for minor violations or that the TMB disciplinary hearings were neither fair nor impartial.
If you supported – and have benefitted from – our 2003 liability reforms, then you support a strong medical board. A strong and fair TMB ensures that citizens will justifiably have continued confidence in their treating physicians. It is the lynchpin to maintaining public support of a regulatory, rather than lawsuit-driven, framework for physician oversight and for ensuring a competent, highly qualified physician work force.
Our work is not done. If you find that the TMB is not being strong enough or fair enough, call the TMA Knowledge Center at (800) 880-7955, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
How TMA Has Helped Ensure a Fair Medical Board
Over the past decade, TMA has won passage of new laws and reform of TMB rules that:
- Prohibit the filing of anonymous complaints.
- Require TMB to notify the physician when insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, or third-party administrators file a complaint.
- Increase the time for a physician to respond to a complaint notice from 30 days to 45 days.
- Allow TMB to require a remedial action plan rather than impose a fine for a minor administrative violation.
- Stopped TMB from publicizing in its newsletter the names of physicians who committed minor violations.
- Allow physicians to tape the proceedings of a TMB informal settlement conference.
- Institute a seven-year statute of limitation on bringing a disciplinary action, mirroring the TMB rule on how long doctors need to keep a patient's medical record.
How TMA Has Helped Maintain a Strong Medical Board
In 2003, TMA lobbied for passage of Senate Bill 104 as an important piece of health care liability reform. That law strengthened the board’s enforcement capabilities and directed TMB to focus on quality-of care-cases and allegations of sexual misconduct, and improved the complaint process by funding expert physician review panels.
Since 2003, TMA has fought off attempts to weaken TMB, which would have enabled pro-lawsuit forces to chip away at our liability reforms. Against TMB's harshest critics, TMA defeated bills and amendments to strip the medical board of much of its ability to protect patients from truly bad doctors practicing far outside the accepted standards of care.
TMA has consistently lobbied for increases in the agency’s appropriation so it could better manage a huge backlog of license applications. TMB has since cut average processing time for a new license to less than 51 days. The agency has also initiated an online application to further speed up the licensure process.
Do Not Be Fooled by Individuals and Interloping Organizations Claiming to Protect Physicians. Just Like the Snake Oil Salesmen of the 1880s, They Will Try to Deceive Texans Once Again.