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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

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will guide counsel on steps that healthcare facilities should take to minimize liability for disruptive physicians in the recruiting and credentialing processes. The panel will also discuss best practices should the healthcare provider pursue disciplinary action against a practitioner 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 creates challenges in the peer-review process when there are allegations that a physician with staff privileges engaged in unacceptable behavior. What contractual language should be included in employment or independent contractor agreements to minimize the risk of disruptive behavior? What provisions and processes can hospitals include in the bylaws to help prevent and deal with disruptive behavior?

Physicians exhibiting disruptive behavior often defend their conduct as being done out of concern for patients. Several courts have expressly acknowledged that a physician's disruptive conduct can harm 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 essential questions:

  • What proactive steps can a hospital take in the credentialing process to limit liability for physicians with staff privileges who are disruptive?
  • 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?


Cochran, Ellee
Ellee Cochran

Husch Blackwell

Ms. Cochran counsels clients through a variety of state and federal regulations, including Medicare and Medicaid...  |  Read More

Weihe, Cecilia
Cecilia Weihe

Director and Operations Counsel, Hospital Division
Kindred Healthcare

Ms. Weihe is responsible for the regulatory compliance and oversight of 66 long-term acute care hospitals in 16 states...  |  Read More

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