Stories with related Professional Interests

Know Your ADA Obligations - 12/04/2019

If someone asked you about your training on federal requirements for accommodating patients with disabilities, would your answer sound something like this? “Oh golly. I have no idea. I’m sure I had to read or study something sometime. I’ve been doing this a long time. I’ve been a doctor for quite a while, so I suspect I had to learn it somewhere, but I don’t remember where.” That’s an actual answer from one internal medicine physician in a recent study of doctors’ knowledge of their legal obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). And if the results of that small study are any indication, many physicians might be lacking in their knowledge on the subject.  


Finally Settled: Hospitals Settle Physician's Anti-Competition Lawsuit - 12/04/2019

A Laredo oncologist confidentially settled a years-long lawsuit involving a pair of hospitals he alleged mischaracterized a past legal misfortune to terminate his privileges and eliminate his clinic from competing with the facilities.


Texas Hits Record for New Physician Applications - 10/28/2019

The Texas Medical Board (TMB) finished is fiscal year last month having received a record number of new physician applications. TMB received 5,544 new applications, up 3 percent from the previous year's record 5,377 applicants.


Warning: Watch Your Referrals - 10/01/2019

Federal anti-kickback law has changed, and it’s gotten broader. As a result, you may need to re-examine your practice’s compensation arrangements. That includes payments for laboratory referrals.  


No Docs of All Trades: Ruling Reinforces Expert Witness Reforms - 09/26/2019

Before Texas’ landmark liability reforms passed in 2003, gray areas in the law often led to serious green for people who sued physicians.


Fighting Back: Practice Wins Court Battle Over Defamatory Online Reviews - 09/03/2019

One practice’s recent legal battle epitomizes physicians’ worst nightmares when it comes to online reviews. Here’s an extreme but glaring real world example, straight from the documents in a lawsuit that Austin Eye first filed in October 2017 over


Medical Futility Law Sustained - 08/02/2019

Court tosses out challenge to ethics committee review of end-of-life care.


Final Verdict? Case Tests Court's Ability to Overturn a Jury Verdict - 08/02/2019

It was an overwhelming, 12-0 verdict – a jury’s unanimous rejection of a negligence case against a Laredo physician. Then, a judge took that decision away and ordered a new trial – not because of jury misconduct, or any procedural stumble that usually negates a court decision. It was taken away, essentially, because the judge said so.


The Meaning of Monthly: Court Ruling Offers Hope on Pain Clinic Registrations - 08/02/2019

Physicians can encounter a web of confusion and unfairness when it comes to navigating the Texas Medical Board (TMB). A Travis County district court has given Texas physicians clarity and hope when it comes to certain medical board investigations. The court’s decision, if it holds up, establishes an important precedent for when physicians are required to register their facility as a pain management clinic.


Setting the Record Straight: Supreme Court Curtails TMB for Over-Sanctioning Physician - 08/02/2019

Eight years ago, when he experienced a rare patient death, McAllen family physician Ruben Aleman, MD, signed the death certificate the way Texas physicians had been doing it for years, and the only way he knew how: using pen and paper. That resulted in the Texas Medical Board (TMB) not only coming after him, but accusing him of “unprofessional or dishonorable conduct that is likely to deceive or defraud the public” – words found in the state Medical Practice Act. The Texas Supreme Court recently decided that was an overreach for a physician who simply hadn’t signed up on the state’s electronic death registration system, which at the time was relatively new.


Breaking Up Is Hard to Do: Physicians Can Get Subpoenaed in Divorce Cases - 03/11/2019

Physicians subpoenaed to participate in a divorce case, whether to testify or simply to supply medical records to the court, could find themselves at the center of an acrimonious split. There are certain things they should know.


Want To Learn More About Medical-Legal Issues? - 01/17/2019

If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the legal issues associated with medicine, plan to attend the Physicians and Hospitals Law Institute, scheduled for early February in San Antonio


Supreme Court Agrees With TMA on Negligence Standard in Liability Case - 01/04/2019

After performing a grammatical deep dive, the Texas Supreme Court has sided with an obstetrician-gynecologist who argued that a higher standard of negligence should apply in a lawsuit against him over complications from a 2011 delivery.


Court Sides With Medical Examiner in Suit Over Autopsy - 12/21/2018

With the Texas Medical Association’s help, a Harris County medical examiner has won the latest battle in a lawsuit over an autopsy he performed following a woman’s 2007 shooting death.


Legal Examination: Case Tests Lawsuit Immunity For Medical Examiners - 12/21/2018

Case tests lawsuit immunity for medical examiners.


Punching Back: Hospital System Sued Again Over Alleged Peer Review Misconduct - 11/02/2018

Hospital system sued again over alleged peer review misconduct.


TMA Objects to Consent Form Changes - 10/31/2018

The Texas Medical Association has issued strong opposition to proposed amendments to the Texas Medical Disclosure Panel’s medical and surgical procedure form, saying they could “inject uncertainty into the informed consent process and thereby increase the likelihood of litigation.”


TMA Argues to Keep Higher Negligence Standard in Emergency Care - 10/23/2018

In a joint friend-of-the-court brief, the Texas Medical Association, Texas Alliance for Patient Access, Texas Hospital Association, and several other organizations told the Texas Supreme Court that proving a negligence case over emergency medical care in an obstetrical unit requires a higher-than-normal standard of proof under state law.


Coming of Age: Celebrating 15 Years of Texas Tort Reform - 09/14/2018

After 15 years, the power of Texas' tort reforms shows up in both the numbers and the attitudes of physicians across the state, with less pressure to practice defensively, and more specialists filling rural voids.


Medical Liability Reform Anniversary: More Doctors to Care for Texas Patients - 09/10/2018

In the 15 years this month since Texas passed landmark medical liability reform, the state’s patients have enjoyed greater access to physicians’ care, as more doctors practice medicine throughout the state. House Bill 4, the Medical Malpractice and Tort Reform Act, and passage of Proposition 12, a constitutional amendment, lessened the likelihood of frivolous lawsuits against physicians and hospitals.


High Court Sides With Medicine in Nondisclosure Case - 08/21/2018

TMA fights to spare physicians from additional disclosure requirements not part of informed consent, and the Texas Supreme Court agrees.


High Court Decision in Nondisclosure Case A Win For Medicine - 06/20/2018

The Texas Supreme Court sided with the Texas Medical Association in a nondisclosure case that TMA warned would have significant, troubling implications had it gone the wrong way.


Sunset Commission Calls for Mandatory Pain Med History Checks - 02/22/2017

In its Report to the 85th Legislature the Sunset Advisory Commission recommends breathing 12 more years of life into the Texas Medical Board and goes into great detail about TMB's oversight of physicians who prescribe "extremely addictive and dangerous drugs, particularly drugs designed for patients with chronic pain, as some of these drugs contribute to an epidemic of addiction and overdose throughout the country." The commission recommends "the board target its inspections of pain management clinics toward the top prescribers, that the board more effectively monitor prescribing patterns through the newly enhanced Prescription Monitoring Program (PDMP), and that physicians and physician assistants be required to search the program and review a patient's prescription history before prescribing dangerous pain medications."


TMA Supports JUA's Ability to Write New Business - 10/25/2016

On Oct. 5, TMA sent a letter urging Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) Commissioner David Mattax to prevent the Texas Medical Liability Insurance Underwriting Association (JUA) from suspending the writing of new business. The JUA, established in 1975, is "critically important as a last stop gap to assure that licensed physicians and health care providers are able to continue to provide medical and dental care for their Texas patients," TMA wrote.


Houston Judge Says DOs Can't File Commitment Papers - 10/14/2016

TMA and a host of other physician organizations are fighting a judge's ruling that would prohibit doctors of osteopathy (DOs) from filing certificates of medical examinations needed for mental health commitments.