May 9, 2024

Congress Introduces ACEP-Developed Due Process Legislation


The "Physician and Patient Safety Act" (H.R. 8325/S. 4278) is now formally introduced in Congress. This bipartisan, bicameral bill would ensure emergency physicians are afforded due process protections under medical staff bylaws before an employer makes decisions affecting a physician’s employment status.

One of ACEPs top advocacy priorities during this year’s Leadership and Advocacy Conference (LAC) was urging Congress to support and pass this legislation.

ACEP helped develop this bill that would require the Department of Health and Human Services to issue regulations ensuring that any physician granted medical staff privileges at a hospital has a fair hearing and appellate review through appropriate mechanisms before any termination, restriction, or reduction of professional activity.

“Safeguarding the foundational right to due process for emergency physicians guarantees that we can fully advocate for the health and well-being of our patients without fear of retaliation or termination,” said Aisha Terry, MD, MPH, FACEP, president of ACEP. “The ‘Physician and Patient Safety Act’ will help dismantle the current two-tiered system where within the same hospital, some physicians have due process protections and others, like emergency physicians, do not.”

This legislation is led in the Senate by Senators Roger Marshall, MD (R-KS) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and in the House by Representatives Raul Ruiz, MD (D-CA), John Joyce, MD (R-PA), Greg Murphy, MD (R-NC), and Katie Porter (D-CA).

This bill is the result of years of ACEP advocacy for stronger protections for emergency physicians on the job. ACEP has long held that all emergency physician contracts should include a due process clause.



Guaranteeing Emergency Physician Due Process Rights (Issue Paper)

ACEP Advocacy Action Center


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