245.016 Physician Reentry Into Practice: The Texas Medical Association recognizes the potential societal as well as personal benefits to be gained from a process that facilitates the reentry of qualified physicians to medical practice following an extended break from professional practice, defined as at least two years, rather than prematurely ending their medical careers and forfeiting their potential contributions to medical care. To assist physicians with the reentry process:
- TMA encourages the Texas Medical Board to use a system that provides a case-by-case, individualized skills assessment of physicians seeking reentry into medical practice.
- TMA supports programs designed to facilitate a physician’s reentry into practice by removing barriers faced in returning to practice, including:
- Program(s) that provide individualized assessments of a physician’s readiness to reenter practice, including identification of potential deficiencies in a physician’s qualifications for reentry and remediation or retraining needs;
- Programs or availability of materials to assist physicians in conducting a self-assessment of readiness to return to practice;
- Process for providing remediation and retraining resources to address a physician’s individual needs as identified through an assessment process; and
- Availability of affordable professional liability coverage for physicians enrolled in reentry programs such as KSTAR (Knowledge, Skills, Training, Assessment, and Research) at the Texas A&M University Health Science Center A&M Rural and Community Health Institute, and other physician remediation and retraining programs.
- TMA applauds the initiative taken by programs such as KSTAR, as well as the physician remediation and retraining programs at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, and similar programs. Each of these programs voluntarily took the initiative to fill the void of resources available to physicians seeking reentry into practice, and these programs serve as exemplary examples of inter-institutional collaboration.
- Texas medical schools are encouraged to consider whether they can play a role in responding to the retraining needs of physicians seeking reentry into practice in their individual regions of the state, including the provision of mini-residencies.
- TMA supports a process for identifying and training physicians to serve as mentors for assisting in monitoring the medical practices of physicians during the early stages of reentry into practice, possibly including a review of medical records and other measures that assess adherence to established standards of care. Monitors should be board certified in the same specialty or subspecialty as the physician being mentored. Further, TMA pledges its willingness to assist the Texas Medical Board in developing any necessary rules or procedures for establishing such a monitoring program.
- TMA recognizes that the ability of physicians to utilize assessment and retraining programs is contingent on the accessibility and affordability of such programs.
- Physicians who plan to take a break from practice and allow their medical licenses to lapse are encouraged to consider the long-term effects and potential barriers they may face should they decide to return to active practice in the future. Further, the Texas Medical Board is encouraged to fully inform physicians at the time of initial licensure as well as renewal of the potential challenges that may be faced should a physician allow his or her Texas medical license to lapse, then seek reentry into medicine after more than two years. The Texas Medical Association also should take steps to inform Texas physicians of these potential challenges to reentry.
- TMA supports greater promotion and awareness of existing resources to help physicians seeking reentry into practice. Further, TMA encourages periodic evaluation of the impact of physician reentry into practice assessment and retraining programs, and continued monitoring of their effectiveness (CME Rep. 2-A-08; amended CME Rep. 2-A-18).
Last Updated On
August 16, 2018