REMINDER: Licenses Expire on June 30; Physicians Urged to Renew Online
Members are urged to follow the directions in letters sent to them to renew on-line and to participate in a physician workforce survey. Licenses expire on June 30, 2011, unless renewed.
The BME is requesting that licensees complete a short workforce survey as part of the renewal process this year. The information sought is similar to that being sought in a legislative initiative, through A.2552, a bill introduced by Assemblyman Herb Conaway (D-7). By a narrow margin, MSNJ leadership chose not to support the bill that would have mandated a collection of this information on an ongoing basis. The BME is relying on its statutory authority to conduct this survey. The survey contains twelve questions and can be completed in five minutes. If a physician is unable to answer a question, it may be skipped, though we encourage members to provide as much information as possible.
MSNJ leadership and staff have reviewed the survey and determined that the data collection could actually assist our advocacy efforts, particularly on: tort reform; Medicare participation; and, the anticipated physician shortage in New Jersey. It may also compliment the economic study on physician practices in New Jersey that were released this week. We believe that participating in the survey may also negate the need for a legislative mandate. We appreciate the BME’s effort to gather this general workforce information in an anonymous, minimally intrusive fashion and urge our members to complete the survey.
Some members have asked about the license renewal question seeking information on affiliations with surgical practices. According to the BME, the information is needed for two reasons: it needs more accurate information on the number of single operating room/physician offices; and, this information will be used to remind those licensees of their obligation to report complications. The BME believes that there may be significant underreporting by these licensees. Some members have expressed concern about the “waiver of rights” language in this request for information. That language is actually responsive to a lawsuit by MSNJ, resolved decades ago, wherein we sought this type of notice for our members.
Physicians who have not undergone the statutory criminal background check and finger-print process must take action now to avoid license suspension. Physicians wishing to renew must quickly submit to the fingerprint check. Physicians who are retiring, leaving the state, or who wish not to renew should select inactive status to avoid automatic statutory license suspension and the more onerous ramifications of non-renewal including submission of delinquent fees and retesting after five years of inactivity. Read this FAQ for further information on the criminal background check.