Issue #29 August/September 2020


This CPPPH newsletter aims to keep readers abreast of current developements and relevant information about physician health and wellbeing in California.

All past issues of CPPPH newsletter are available from the CPPPH website:


Wellness activities address quality of life and professional satisfaction for all physicians. Wellbeing activities focus on an individual physician and provide resources for identifying, evaluating, referring, treating, and monitoring for physicians when addiction, mental health, behavioral issues, and the effects of aging are a concern.

Confidential Assistance Over the Phone

The Physicans’ and Dentists’ Confidential Assistance Line is a 24-hour phone service providing completely confidential doctor-to-doctor assistance for physicians experiencing substance use or mental health issues. Call:

  • (650) 756-7787
    (northern California)
  • (213) 383-2691
    (southern California)


Send Us Your Comments

We want to hear from you. Send comments to

Physician Sexual Misconduct

In the February/March issue, we reported on the Medical Board of California’s requirement that hospitals report allegations of sexual misconduct within 15 days (§805.8 B&P). In May, the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) issued a report describing, in clear language, behaviors that are understood as “physician sexual misconduct” and making recommendations for how state licensing agencies should view them.
“This behavior may be verbal or physical, can occur in person or virtually, and may include expressions of thoughts and feelings or gestures that are of a sexual nature or that a patient or surrogate may reasonably construe as sexual.
Physician sexual misconduct often takes place along a continuum of escalating severity. This continuum comprises a variety of behaviors…”

It states the supporting rationale for requiring hospitals to report and levying fines if they do not.
“The ethical duty to report has proven insufficient in recent years, however, to provide the information state medical boards must have to stop or prevent licensees from engaging in sexual misconduct.”

It specifies how broadly the requirement applies.
“This duty [to report] extends beyond physician-patient encounters to reporting inappropriate behavior in interactions with other members of the healthcare team, and in the learning environment.”

For a copy of the 30-page report, click HERE.

How PHPs Work

The Carlat Addiction Treatment Report, March 2020, included a long interview with the founder and Medical Director of Georgia’s Physician Health Program, Paul Earley, MD, who is the Immediate Past President of the Federation of State Physician Health Programs.

Sample quotes:
PHPs help with detection. They help steer people to proper evaluation. Physicians are bright, and that intelligence can make it more difficult for an evaluator to make the correct diagnosis. PHPs make sure that the I’s are dotted and the T’s are crossed, helping physicians get care with the least possible impact on their license and livelihood.


Next Video Conference for Wellbeing Committees

Thursday, September 17 will be the next CPPPH/CSAM video conference for the wellbeing committees that address alcohol/drug use and addiction, mental health issues, cognitive functioning, aging and behavioral issues. It will be a one-hour session from 12:00 noon to 1:00 pm, PDT.

The topic of the last two sessions was Drug Testing: What Do You Test For, When, Why and How with Greg Skipper, MD.

The topic on September 17th will be What Medical Staffs and Wellbeing Committees Need to Know about DUIs. To register, click the RSVP link below. It will take you to a CSAM form where you can register. All registrants will receive the Zoom link for the CPPPH/CSAM meeting.

This link has been removed since it is no longer active.  

Available from CPPPH

You can read all the past issues of CPPPH eNews HERE.
Five CPPPH guideline documents are available HERE.



Issue #29, August/September 2020

Our mailing address is:
One Capital Mall, Suite 800
Sacramento, California 95814

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