Statewide PHP for California


Wellness Concept


Leading The Way To Physician Health In California

CPPPH was formed in 2009 by organizations with a long-standing involvement with physician health, namely the California Society of Addiction Medicine, the California Psychiatric Association, the California Medical Association, and the California Hospital Association.  Its activities are based in the understanding that supporting physician health contributes to public safety by providing services for physicians who face medical, substance use, psychological, behavioral and/or emotional issues that, if left unaddressed, could adversely impact their ability to deliver safe patient care. CPPPH goals and objectives are:

  • To collaborate with physicians, physician groups and entities responsible for quality patient care in defining an optimum physician health program for California
  • To provide consultation, education and assistance to those responsible for patient safety and physician heath
  • To develop and disseminate guidelines and consensus documents
  • To create a full-scale statewide program that coordinates all the services needed to address the spectrum of physician health issues

CPPPH is dedicated to the establishment of an ideal physician health program in California. We envision a program designed to encourage and assist all organizations, institutions and entities where physicians practice or affiliate in their efforts to maintain the health of their physician population.  Its services should be available to assist the citizens of California, the regulatory board, associations, hospitals, clinics and individual physicians. California’s ideal physician health program (PHP) should identify, provide, or support clinically-based health services for physicians with physical, mental health or addiction issues which, if undetected or not appropriately treated and monitored, could compromise the physician’s ability to practice medicine safely.

Program Components
A well designed PHP will include:

  • Education throughout the medical community
  • Orientation to the role and function of physician health committees
  • Consultation to physician health committees and all with the responsibility for physician health, public safety and the maintenance of quality of care Advocacy for activities that promote wellness
  • Activities designed to support case finding Intervention Evaluation, both initial assessment and continuing evaluation as needed, including evaluation for the resumption of patient care responsibilities
  • Design of treatment and monitoring plan Referral to initial treatment
  • Referral to on-going treatment Monitoring Case management Quality assurance activities

Guidelines for what criteria the different physician health services should meet A process for determining if an organization’s or group’s services meet the guidelines

Policies and procedures for the operation of the physician health program
Once a PHP is established, it will provide consistency and continuity in approaching and managing physician health across the state. Referrals into the program are accepted from all sources. Eligibility for the program is designed for persons with substance use, mental health disorders or physical illness when a clinical evaluation determines that the condition can be monitored and treated with the resources available to the program. The length of time a person is required to be in the program is in the range of 3-5 years, based on the severity of illness and clinical recommendation.

The program does not report information about a participant to any person or organization other than the referring person or entity unless there has been failure to comply with the agreement and it was determined that the physician was a danger to the public. The organization will assign the resources necessary for appropriate quality assurance activities. The organization and the program it operates will be subject to periodic audit. The results of the audit will be reported to — All funding sources — All program participants — The full medical community — An oversight body — The legislature

References consulted in the development of the CPPPH model adopted by the Board of Directors of CPPPH, Inc. on April 25, 2011:

  • Model Physician Health Program Act, March 2009 American Medical Association
  • Public Policy Statement of the American Society of Addiction Medicine on Healthcare and Other Licensed Professionals with Addictive Illness, April 2011
  • Policy on Physician Impairment, April 1995 Federation of State Medical Boards
  • Guidelines for Physician Health Programs, 2008 Federation of State Physician Health Programs
  • Guidelines for Hospital Medical Staff Committees on the Well-being of Physicians, 2009 California Medical Association

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