While not intended as a legal document, did you know your personnel manual may have the force of an employment contract? If you haven’t done so in a while, or not at all, review it to be sure it won't cause unintended problems. Like many other physician contracts, personnel manuals often do not get an annual review; they get stuck in a drawer never to be looked at again until an employee leaves the practice and a problem arises.
Perhaps you think your personnel manual as some sort of low-key presentation booklet that describes policies and benefits for your staff. Unfortunately, it's often loaded with dynamite. A variety of court decisions have made this apparent.
If you haven’t reviewed your manual recently, I strongly suggest having it reviewed by your legal counsel – make sure it’s legally correct, comprehensive, clear and relatively bulletproof. As I mentioned before, many manuals in existence today are ticking time bombs waiting to go off. You certainly don’t want to create any undue problems for yourself and your medical practice. This issue not only applies to medical practices, but any healthcare organization that issues an employee manual to its workforce.