In 1917, the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia gained accreditation. The University is dedicated to educating medical students and training healthcare professionals according to the “highest ethical and professional standards.” The School of Medicine MD Student Handbook contains the expectations of high academic and professional standards necessary to be a physician.
Medical school students have begun a long journey pursuing a career of practicing medicine. In addition to rigid standards for academic performance that are subject to remediation, each institution maintains guidelines for professionalism. Medical students with the prospect of serious disciplinary sanctions including suspension and dismissal may face less desirable residency options, employment opportunities, and reduced earning potential. Having an experienced attorney in an advisory role is critical for protecting your rights and achieving a positive resolution.
Professional Expectations and Disciplinary Overview
The School of Medicine's intent with non-academic discipline is that all students are considerate, responsible, and act with integrity. The “continuation as a student is conditional” based on compliance with the Conduct Code. Students must respond appropriately to feedback and constructive criticism. Standards for appearance and dress should always convey a professional and positive image.
The non-academic disciplinary process involves summoning all parties concerned to a hearing before the School of Medicine Conduct Committee. If the sanctions imposed are suspension or expulsion, this information is entered on the student's permanent record. Those wishing to appeal a ruling must notify the Dean in writing within seven days.
The Progress and Promotions Committee (P & P) tracks student progress in terms of academic performance and any potential “lapses in professional behavior.” Dismissal is reserved for serious lapses in professionalism or persistent academic failure after repeating a phase or module. Grounds for immediate dismissal include violations of professionalism that demonstrate “gross negligence” such as those that could cause serious patient harm in a clinical setting or behavior that is “grossly inappropriate” for the medical profession.
Students that do not meet the required competency level for a course or module are subject to remediation, which is specifically tailored to addressing the deficiency. If the remediation is unsuccessful, it is documented on the student's record and the Office of Medical Education and Student Affairs will assume responsibility for further measures.
All students must adhere to the MD Student Honor Code that requires integrity and ethics in academics. Students engaging in plagiarism, cheating, misrepresentation, or falsification, will appear before the five-member Medical Student Council on Honor composed of students and faculty. If the allegations are proven, the student will be suspended for a minimum of one academic term or face permanent expulsion.
Experienced Advisory Attorney for Medical Students
Medical students that are the subject of serious disciplinary actions have much at stake, as having a clean background is critical in the medical profession. Students that are in remediation for under-performing academically, violations related to academic integrity, and other issues should promptly consult with an attorney. Retaining seasoned advisory representation ensures the school's specific disciplinary provisions are properly interpreted and that you are afforded due process.
Leaders at today's institutions of medical education and research are devoted to maintaining an impeccable reputation. The administrators responsible for the disciplinary process may be motivated to promptly resolve these matters and impose disproportionately harsh penalties. Joseph D. Lento is an attorney that understands the potentially adverse repercussions and will support your best interests. Contact the office today at (888) 535-3686.