Membership and privileges on a hospital medical staff is a necessary adjunct to most physicians' practices. The hospital must assure that quality care is available for and provided to patients that come for inpatient or outpatient care. Doctors must assure that hospital polices, procedures, and resources are consistent with quality care and standards of medical practice and physicians remain responsible for clinical care decisions in the hospital. In addition, medical staff bylaws and rules and regulations must grant due process protections for physicians particularly in the event of disciplinary action initiated by the hospital against them. Physicians should be aware of the role and authority of committees of the medical staff and must carefully monitor any proposed changes to the medical staff's bylaws and rules and regulations.
Iowa Hospital Licensing Rules
Iowa Code chapter 135B is the hospital licensing statute. Its implementing regulations are found in rules of the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals (DIA). Rules and regulations regarding hospital medical staff's are addressed in Iowa Code section 135B.7 and Iowa Administrative Code rule 481-51.5. To locate these references, go to the http://www.legis.state.ia.us/ and click on "Iowa Law."
AMA Model Medical Staff Bylaws
The AMA's Office of General Counsel and Organized Medical Staff Services joined to publish a comprehensive resource document to assist physicians in understanding their rights and responsibilities as members of a hospital medical staff and in assuring that the bylaws and rules and regulations of the hospital medical staff reflect those rights and responsibilities and provide for due process where physician rights and staff privileges are challenged. Physician's Guide to Medical Staff Organization Bylaws, 3 rd Edition, is available to AMA members by searching the AMA web site at http://www.ama-assn.org or calling (800) 621-8335, Item #DL424505, at no cost to members, $30 nonmenbers.