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Physicians and Surgeons

A Physician or Surgeon (M.D.) is an individual issued a license allowing them to practice medicine. A physician may diagnose, prescribe, and administer treatment to individuals suffering from injury or disease.

Signage for Physicians Offices

AB 583 (Business & Professions Code section 680.5) Education Disclosure

Physicians must disclose their education - in certain practice settings

Business and Professions Code section 680.5 requires that a health care practitioner communicate to a patient their name, state-granted practitioner license type and highest level of academic degree by one or both of the following methods.

  • In writing at the patient's initial office visit, and/or
  • In a prominent display in an area visible to patients in their office.

A physician who is certified by an American Board of Medical Specialties member board, a board or association with requirements equivalent to a medical specialty board, or a board or association with an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education approved postgraduate training program, must disclose the name of the board or association by either method above.

Health care practitioners disclosing this information are required to present it in at least 24-point type in the following format:

  1. Name and license type
  2. Highest level of academic degree
  3. Board certification, if applicable

A physician who provides information regarding health care services on an Internet website that is directly controlled or administered by the physician or his or her office personnel, must prominently display on that Internet website the information required by this law.

The following is an example of how the requirements can be displayed (click on labels for more information):

License type and highest level of academic degree
Board certification

The following is an example of the requirements combined with the Notice to Consumers law:

Medical doctors are licensed and regulated by the Medical Board of California
(800) 633-2322

John Doe, M.D.
Board Certified Pediatrician

This disclosure requirement does not apply to physicians who:

  • Provide professional medical services to enrollees of a health care service plan that exclusively contracts with a single medical group in a specific geographic area.
  • Work in a facility licensed under section 1250 of the Health and Safety Code (a facility to which persons are admitted for a 24-hour stay or longer) or in a clinical laboratory.
  • Work in a licensed clinical laboratory, hearing aid dispensary, respiratory care facility, veterinary medicine facility, marriage and family therapists practice, and clinical social worker practice.
Notice to Consumers Regulations (Business & Professions Code section 2026)

Per Business and Professions Code section 2026, beginning January 1, 2023, all licensees and registrants of the Board must provide notice to each patient or client that they are licensed/registered and regulated by the Board, and their license/registration can be checked and complaints against the licensee/registrant can be made through the Board's website or by contacting the Board.

Health & Safety Code section 109282 — Prostate Cancer "Be Informed" Notice

(a) Every person or entity who owns or operates a health facility or a clinic, or who is licensed as a physician and surgeon and rents or owns the premises where their practice is located, shall cause a sign or notice to be posted where prostate cancer screening or treatment is performed by any physician and surgeon, or in a reasonably proximate area to where prostate cancer screening or treatment is performed. A sign or notice posted at the patient registration area of the health facility, clinic, or physician and surgeon's office shall constitute compliance with this section.

(b) The sign or notice shall read as follows:

Be Informed

"If you are a patient being treated for any form of prostate cancer, or prior to performance of a biopsy for prostate cancer, your physician and surgeon is urged to provide you a written summary of alternative efficacious methods of treatment, pursuant to Section 109280 of the California Health and Safety Code."

"The information about methods of treatment was developed by the State Department of Public Health to inform patients of the advantages, disadvantages, risks, and descriptions of procedures."

(c) The sign shall be not less than eight and one-half inches by 11 inches and shall be conspicuously displayed so as to be readable. The words "BE INFORMED" shall not be less than one-half inch in height and shall be centered on a single line with no other text. The message on the sign shall appear in English, Spanish, and Chinese.

(d) Subject to future, regular production and replacement schedules from the implementation of the act adding this subdivision, these signs and notices shall include the Internet website address of the State Department of Public Health and the Medical Board of California, and a notice regarding the availability of updated prostate cancer summaries on these websites.