PHYSICIAN EMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS: 

TEN POINTS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU SIGN

Thank you for visiting this page. We're so glad you're interested in the presentation!  It was developed by Jennifer to provide physicians and other healthcare providers with an overview of the contract terms typically found in healthcare provider employment contracts. The program was designed to fit in with a hospital's grand rounds or as a lunchtime presentation. Every physician, nurse practitioner, or healthcare provider should at least be familiar with the nuts and bolts of an employment contract before going on a job interview. 


The approximately thirty-minute program covers the following topics: 

  1. WHAT AM I AGREEING TO DO?: Of course, a physician is expected to see patients, but does the contract set forth the specific parameters of the scope of duty, such as office hours and on-call coverage? What non-patient care duties are included in the scope of duties? Now is the time to negotiate these duties and get them in writing. 
  2. HOW WILL I BE COMPENSATED? Rarely is a provider simply given a salary. Typically, a provider is paid a base salary plus a bonus. Is the bonus discretionary or based upon productivity? If it's a productivity based bonus, what formula is utilized to determine the bonus? 
  3. WHAT BENEFITS WILL I RECEIVE?: "Benefits" cover a large range of items and what's provided (or not) must be considered, when analyzing compensation: health, dental, life insurance, retirement, medical license, DEA registration, hospital dues for staff privileges, CME, journal subscriptions, vacation and sick time-off (with or without pay & does unused time accrue?) Disability and maternity leave.  
  4. TERM & TERMINATION & WHAT IF I BECOME DISABLED?: When does my contract begin and end? Are there conditions to meet before it begins (staff privileges?) Does it auto-renew? Does it allow for early termination with notice? Is cause required for the employer to terminate? If termination is related to breach of contract, is there time to cure? What are reasons for immediate termination? Is there a framework to follow should I become unexpectedly disabled? 
  5. WHAT ARE PRACTICE STANDARDS, FACILITIES, MEDICAL STAFF PRIVILEGES, ASSIGNMENT OF PROFESSIONAL FEES & MEDICAL RECORDS?:  These contractual terms often exist in various and separate clauses of the employment contract, but describe obligations of both the provider and group that are vital to successful practice operation.
  6. WHEN WILL I BE UP FOR PARTNER?  While a guarantee of partnership is rarely found in an employment contract, it is possible to set forth when the review for partnership will occur.
  7. UPON LEAVING THE PRACTICE, WILL I BE BOUND BY A NON-COMPETE?: Are they generally enforceable in my state? What do they entail? 
  8. DO I NEED AN ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION CLAUSE?: Litigation costs big money and the future is not predictable, so yes, but what is the best way to request an ADR clause & what parameters will best protect your interests. 
  9. LEGAL BLAH BLAH BLAH....WHEN IT MATTERS, IT MATTERS.  The standard clauses of contract that "are in every contract" include governing law, assignment, amendments, severability, notices, counterparts. They may not seem important to the big picture and in fact, often are not. But in the circumstances where other contractual issues or breach of contract arise, they may affect interpretation. 
  10. WHY IS ISSUE SPOTTING VITAL?: STARK, ANTI-KICKBACK, HIPAA, CMP: Government scrutiny of the healthcare industry is not to be taken lightly. From the outset of the practice of medicine, a prudent physician must be aware of any arrangement that may subject them to investigation/charges. It is vitally important to be "aware" of issues, which raise red flags.                                                                                                                                      

Please contact us to schedule a time for Jennifer to present: PHYSICIAN EMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS: TEN POINTS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU SIGN.