To date, 2,000 physicians have signed up for the Medical Justice program and, according to Segal, are asking their patients to sign MPAs. What makes the agreement unique is its use of copyright law. Segal says that Web sites are immune from accountability under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. But they aren’t immune from copyright infringement suits. So when a patient signs an MPA, the patient automatically assigns all intellectual property rights for anything the patient may write (and publish) about the physician to the physician. Should the patient post a rating on a Web site, the physician can then claim copyright infringement and issue a “take down” notice, forcing the Web site to remove the review pending further legal action.
One thing to be active against defamation, quite another to assert the automatic assignment of physician–patient relationship as an intellectual property right. This cuts directly to who owns the patient record. This needs to be challenged in court (and would be defeated). When you consider where ownership of PHRs may take us, the notion of automatic assignment of (intellectual) property rights to one party exclusively is very antithetical.
Bizarre argument… are physicians that afraid of being *rated* by the public? Many docs should embrace this. I receive numerous patients every week because they are tired of waiting weeks for an appointment at other providers offices, tired of waiting 2 hours in their waiting rooms, tired of waiting so long, seeing a PA or NP and getting only a cordial nod from the actual physician.
I have been able to run a very active practice and still find time to see each and every person myself, usually with no more than a 15 min wait. Are we as physicians afraid of the one or two folks who waited a bit too long or who were dissatisfied for another reason and went straight for the keyboard to berate us???? SocMedia is rating us now and will continue rating us. We need to be out in front of this. Physicians need to know what patients are saying about them and then we need to use that information to change our practice and improve the overall experience for the consumer. Failure to adapt could have significant negative consequences in the years to come….