Disruptive Physicians: Minimizing Liability for Negligent Credentialing, Poor Quality of Care, and Physician Conduct

Practical and Legal Approaches for Hospitals, Integrated Systems, Medical Groups and Other Providers

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926
Program Materials

This CLE webinar will provide guidance for counsel on steps healthcare facilities should take to minimize liability for disruptive physicians in the recruiting and credentialing processes and when disciplinary action is required for disruptive behavior.


Disruptive physician behavior can become a problem for healthcare facilities in the credentialing process when red flags suggest a physician’s past behavior problems. It also can create challenges in the peer review process when a physician with staff privileges is alleged to have engaged in unacceptable behavior. What contractual language should be included in employment or independent contractor agreements to minimize the risk of disruptive behavior?

Physicians exhibiting disruptive behavior often defend their conduct as being done out of concern for patients. A number of courts have expressly acknowledged that a physician’s disruptive conduct can have an adverse impact on overall patient care. Further, the Joint Commission requires hospitals to address disruptive behavior by physicians and other staff members to maintain accreditation.

Counsel can guide healthcare facilities in both proactively planning and quickly reacting when dealing with a disruptive physician to minimize liability and maintain a facility's accreditation.

Listen as our authoritative panel examines the impact of disruptive physicians and what healthcare facilities can do in the recruitment, credentialing and peer review processes to anticipate and minimize liability due to physician lawsuits, claims of poor quality of care, and claims of negligent credentialing.



  1. Disruptive physicians and behavior defined
    1. Disruptive physician vs. impaired physician (with examples)
    2. Physicians advocating for patient care
    3. Classifying disruptive behavior
  2. Credentialing process
    1. Due diligence
    2. Deterrent aspects
    3. Negligent credentialing
    4. Code of conduct
    5. Employment contract
  3. Disciplinary action
    1. Joint Commission requirements
    2. Policies and procedures/protocol for addressing disruptive physician behavior in the workplace
    3. Integrating policy in medical staff bylaws
    4. Corrective measures
    5. Peer review process
    6. ADA
    7. Reporting requirements (Data Bank, state)
  4. Best practices


The panel will review these and other key questions:

  • What proactive steps can a hospital take in the credentialing process to limit liability for physicians who are disruptive after staff privileges have been granted?
  • What contractual language should be included in employment agreements to minimize the risk of disruptive behavior?

  • What policies and procedures should healthcare facilities establish to address disruptive behavior by physicians?


Dr. Susan F. Reynolds
Dr. Susan F. Reynolds
President & CEO
The Institute for Medical Leadership

Dr. Reynolds is a former emergency physician, CEO of an emergency medical center, White House advisor and...  |  Read More

Rich, J. Peter
J. Peter Rich

McDermott Will & Emery

Mr. Rich practices almost exclusively in the healthcare field, advising hospitals, medication groups, and health plans,...  |  Read More

Rivera, Julian
Julian Rivera

Husch Blackwell

Mr. Rivera represents healthcare providers in business matters and advocates on their behalf before government...  |  Read More

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