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Debate continues about whether medical staff physicians should have mandatory board certification

Although the reasons and arguments might differ, the question of whether hospitals should require board certification for staff physicians continues to arise when granting membership to an organization's medical staff. Almost 20 years ago, Gwinnett Hospital Authority, a Georgia hospital system, changed its bylaws to require specialty training or specialty board certification for admission to the medical staff. The requirements effectively shut out osteopathic physicians (DO) in favor of allopathic physicians (MD), causing a group of osteopaths to argue in court that despite comparable education, they were the victims of discriminatory hiring practices (Silverstein v. the Hospital Authority of Gwinnett County, 1988).