Physician Probation Disclosure

SB 1448 (authored by Senator Hill) was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown on September 19, 2018.  The new law, effective July 2019, requires physicians who are on probation with a licensing agency, such as the Medical and Osteopathic Boards of California, to provide patients with a disclosure prior to a patient’s first visit.  The disclosure must be in writing and include the physician’s probation status, the length and end date of probation, all practice restrictions place on the physician, a phone number for the probationary agency, and an explanation of how a patient can find further information about the probationary terms.  The disclosures must be signed by the patient and kept by the physician.
As a practical matter, one expects that physicians will think twice now about stipulating to a probationary order with their respective licensing agency, preferring instead to request an administrative hearing and attempt to avoid any probationary order that adds an administrative burden to her or his practice.
The full text of the SB 1448 can be found here(link is external).
Any physician or healthcare practitioner facing disciplinary action should seek the advice of experienced counsel before agreeing to probation.