Civil Remedies Div. the Gen. Counsel, DAB No. CR2580 (2012) (H.H.S.)

Court and Agency Decisions and Orders (including case law)

This is an administrative law decision and order from the Department of Health and Human Services (H.H.S.) against a California-based physician who denied surgical treatment to an HIV-positive patient in violation of section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, one of the key federal anti-discrimination statutes.

The physician participated in Medi-Cal, California's Medicaid program, which required him to provide medical assistance to individuals with disabilities, including those with HIV. 45 C.F.R. § 84.4. After an initial evaluation, the physician agreed to perform surgery on a patient, but later refused after learning the man was HIV-positive.

The physician participated in initial settlement negotiations but repeatedly failed to respond to the proposed settlement, which would have required him to comply with section 504, agree to six hours of AIDS education for himself and his staff, and display a notice of non-discrimination. As a result, H.H.S. terminated the physician's receipt of federal financial assistance until he complies with the requirements of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and regulations.