Arlington, VA (PRWEB) April 25, 2008
According to the American Association for Health Freedom (AAHF), integrative medicine practitioners' licenses are typically more vulnerable than their colleagues for two main reasons: their modality of practice and procedures methods are often viewed as not being science based, and they often are solo practitioners that have fewer resources to counteract aggressive state medical boards and their investigators.
Through phone calls and requests for help that AAHF receives each year, they believe that a majority of investigations of integrative medicine practitioners occur not because of patient harm or patient complaint but because a disgruntled employee, competitor, insurance company, or someone who doesn't believe in integrative medicine complained to the state medical board.
"We receive numerous requests for help each year because state medical boards are over-zealously pursuing integrative medical doctors," Brenna Hill, the AAHF Executive Director said. "Unfortunately by the time they call us they've already signed their rights away. At that point there's not much we can do to help." Often these charges may make the practitioner a felon.
Inspired by their numerous members who have gone through exhausting state medical board investigations and legal battles to retain their licenses, AAHF has published A Practitioner's Guide to Protecting Your License and Your Practice from Medical Board and Government Action. The well-respected law firm, Augustine, Kern and Levens, Ltd, wrote the Practitioner's Guide. AAHF hopes that this guide will help practitioners think ahead and create a plan.
"It is always a good policy to plan ahead," Hill said, "The decisions you make at the beginning of a state medical board investigation could mean the difference between saving or losing your license and your freedom to practice the type of medicine you believe is most beneficial to your patients."
Although the Practitioner's Guide does not provide legal advice and is not tailored to any specific situation, it will provide physicians with general guidelines and information in dealing with medical boards. The guide includes best practices to help a practitioner institute an office policy and plan if there's a knock on the door and how to respond to investigators as well as what to do if presented with a subpoena and how to handle a settlement offer. AAHF is providing the guide free to their Professional members.
AAHF is a non-profit association based in the Washington DC area that promotes health freedom legislation in all 50 states and in Congress. As the politically active voice at the federal and state level for integrative medicine, AAHF is involved in crafting, monitoring, and supporting legislation that allows the right of the consumer to choose and the practitioner to practice. For more information, please visit http://www.healthfreedom.net.