New Law Extends the Time Doctors’ Disciplinary Records Stay Online
On Monday, Gov. Jerry Brown (D) signed a bill (AB 1886) that requires the Medical Board of California to extend the amount of time that information on certain disciplinary actions against doctors remains available online, the Sacramento Business Journal reports.
Beginning on Jan. 1, 2013, the board removed nearly 7,000 records from its website and continued to take down 30 to 40 records each month. The move came after a 2003 decision required the board to remove such information from its site after 10 years.
The records include information on physicians':
- License revocation or surrender;
- License suspension;
- Probation; and
- Equivalent actions.
Details of AB 1886
The bill, by Assembly member Susan Eggman (D-Stockton), requires information on serious disciplinary actions to remain posted on the board's website indefinitely. The measure was sponsored by the state medical board in an effort to increase transparency, according to the Business Journal.
The bill was amended after the California Medical Association expressed concerns about provisions that would have required less serious disciplinary actions to be posted indefinitely. In response, lawmakers changed the bill to:
- Reduce the amount of time citation information is available online from 10 years to three years; and
- Reduce the amount of time malpractice settlement information is available from 10 years to five years.
Records that have been removed from the site but now meet the standards under the bill will be reposted, according to the Business Journal (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 8/26).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.