Physician group to pay health system $1.2M following neurosurgeon walkout 

Fresno, Calif.-based Community Regional Medical Center will receive a $1.2 million settlement from Inspire Health Medical Group for allegations that neurosurgeons planned a walkout in 2021 but gave the system less than 32 hours notice.

Here are five things to know about the suit:

1. Community Regional sued Inspire, known then as Central California Faculty Medical Group, for allegedly withholding neurosurgical care to secure leverage over the health system. 

2. The complaint claims the 2020 walkout was planned for several weeks, but the physician group gave insufficient time to find replacements. The health system alleges Inspire was aiming to strip it of its level I trauma center designation to gain contract negotiating leverage.

3. The walkout resulted in the hospital having to transfer critical patients out of Fresno and to urgently locate replacement surgeons. 

4. "While the $1.2 million settlement CCFMG will pay does not fully address the disruption caused by the unprecedented neurosurgeon walkout, it does reinforce that business disputes should never impact patient care and the health of our community," Community Regional COO Craig Wagoner said in a statement shared with Becker's. "Our hope is that CCFMG will work with us to ensure that abrupt interruption of patient care never happens again. By putting this unfortunate dispute behind us, we hope to repair the relationship with CCFMG that Community has had for decades and focus on providing the best possible care for the Central Valley."

5. Inspire did not respond to Becker's request for comment.

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