2010 Florida Statutes
Concerted effort to refuse emergency room treatment to patients; penalties.
Concerted effort to refuse emergency room treatment to patients; penalties.—
A physician licensed pursuant to this chapter may not instigate or engage in a concerted effort to refuse or get physicians to refuse to render services to a patient or patients in a hospital emergency room by failing to report for duty, absenting themselves from their positions, submitting their resignations, abstaining from the full and faithful performance of their medical duties, or otherwise causing conduct that adversely affects the services of the hospital. For the purposes of this subsection, the term “concerted” means contrived or arranged by agreement, planned or devised together, or done or performed together in cooperation.
If a physician or group of physicians engages in conduct in violation of subsection (1), either the department or the hospital where the conduct occurs may file suit in circuit court to enjoin such conduct.
Upon such suit being filed, the court shall conduct a hearing, with notice to the department, the board, and all interested parties, at the earliest practicable time. If the plaintiff makes a showing that a violation of subsection (1) is in progress or that there is a clear, real, and present danger that such a violation is about to commence, the court shall issue a temporary injunction enjoining such violation. Upon final hearing, the court shall either make the injunction permanent or dissolve it.
A physician found to be in contempt of court for violating such an injunction shall be fined an amount considered appropriate by the court but not less than $5,000. In determining the appropriate fine, the court shall objectively consider the extent of services lost to the hospital and its patients.
A violation by a physician of subsection (1) constitutes ground for disciplinary action against the physician by the board, including the suspension or revocation of her or his license, and subjects the physician to liability for any damages that the hospital or any patient therein sustains as a result of the violation.
s. 34, ch. 88-1; s. 12, ch. 88-277; s. 1, ch. 89-296; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 218, ch. 97-103.