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Professional Conduct Program
This program will provide a way for SVS members to bring complaints of unprofessional conduct of any nature, including false advertising, unscrupulous business practices, substance abuse or failure to retain qualifications, in addition to fraudulent expert witness testimony.
Procedure for Processing Charges
Charges should be sent to:
Society for Vascular Surgery
633 N. Saint Clair St., 22nd Floor
Chicago, IL 60611
Any active member or senior member in good standing may refer charges alleging that a member is failing to maintain good professional standing or has violated the SVS Code of Ethics. Such charges may be made against any class of member, including suspended members. All charges shall be in writing and shall specify the basis therefore. Members wishing to initiate charges should send a letter to the Executive Director at the address set forth above, spelling out in detail the medical issues involved and the testimony of the vascular surgeon which they believe to have been unprofessional or unethical.
The description should refer to the specific elements of the Code of Ethics or Expert Witness Guidelines which have been violated and should cite specific pages of the relevant transcripts supporting those charges. The full text of any relevant transcript should also be submitted with the charge. In order to comply with HIPAA requirements, any medical records which have not been made public through litigation, should be depersonalized; however any records which have been admitted in evidence in a trial and which are now matters of public record need not be depersonalized.
The Society will review all charges for compliance with the Society's Bylaws. Any purported charges which are not in compliance with the Society's Bylaws, or which could not be the basis for disciplinary action by SVS if proven, or which involve testimony given in or which is the subject of pending litigation, will be returned to the Complainant.
The remaining charges will be sent to the SVS Ethics and Professional Conduct Committee (“the Committee”).
It is the Complainant's responsibility to collect and present all evidence which he or she wishes the Committee to consider in support of the charges. The Complainant shall de-identify all Protected Health Information, as that term is defined in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”), prior to submitting such information to the Committee. Protected Health Information that has not been de identified will be returned to the Complainant in the absence of patient consent or an exception to HIPAA's privacy regulations; however, documents or records which have been admitted into evidence in litigation or filed with any court are considered a matter of public record and need not be de identified. Copies of all material supporting the charges will be furnished to each Committee member. No testimony in support of the charges will be permitted.
The Respondent will be furnished a full set of the documents which are furnished to the Committee by the Complainant.
The charges will be processed according to Article XI Section 2 of the SVS Bylaws.
The Complainant will be notified of the conclusion of the matter, but will not be notified as to the nature of the action taken except in the case of suspension or withdrawal of membership, which are public actions.