Updated April 15, 2010
Approved by the HRS Board of Trustees June 2009
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In keeping with the policy of maintaining the highest standards of conduct and ethics the Heart Rhythm Society and the Heart Rhythm Foundation will investigate any suspected fraudulent or dishonest use or misuse of the Society’s or Foundation's resources or property by staff, board members, consultants or volunteers. The Heart Rhythm Society and the Heart Rhythm Foundation are committed to maintaining the highest standards of conduct and ethical behavior and promotes a working environment that values respect, fairness and integrity. All staff, board members and volunteers shall act with honesty, integrity and openness in all their dealings as representatives for the organization. Failure to follow these standards will result in disciplinary action including possible termination of employment, dismissal from one’s board or volunteer duties and possible civil or criminal prosecution if warranted.
Employees, board members and volunteers are encouraged to report suspected fraudulent or dishonest conduct (i.e. to act as “whistle-blower”), pursuant to the procedures set forth below.
A person’s concerns about possible fraudulent or dishonest use or misuse of resources or property should be reported to his or her supervisor or, if suspected by a volunteer, to the staff member supporting the volunteer’s work. If for any reason a person finds it difficult to report his or her concerns to a supervisor or staff member supporting the volunteer’s work, the person may report the concerns directly to the Society's Chair of the Ethics Oversight Committee (click to e-mail Ethics Chair) for determination of due process. Alternately, to facilitate reporting of suspected violations where the reporter wishes to remain anonymous, a written statement may be submitted to one of the individuals listed above.
Baseless Allegations: Allegations made with reckless disregard for their truth or falsity. People making such allegations may be subject to disciplinary action by the Heart Rhythm Society, and/or legal claims by individuals accused of such conduct.
Fraudulent or Dishonest Conduct: A deliberate act or failure to act with the intention of obtaining an unauthorized benefit. Examples of such conduct include, but are not limited to:
Whistle-Blower: An employee, board member or volunteer who informs a supervisor or the Chair of the Ethics Oversight Committee about an activity relating to the Heart Rhythm Society or the Heart Rhythm Foundation which that person believes to be fraudulent or dishonest.
Due to the important yet sensitive nature of the suspected violations, effective professional follow-up is critical. Supervisors, while appropriately concerned about “getting to the bottom” of such issues, should not in any circumstances perform any investigative or other follow up steps on their own. Accordingly, a supervisor who becomes aware of suspected misconduct:
All relevant matters, including suspected but unproved matters, will be reviewed and analyzed, with documentation of the receipt, retention, investigation and treatment of the complaint. Appropriate corrective action will be taken, if necessary, and findings will be communicated back to the reporting person and his or her supervisor. Cases may warrant investigation by an independent person such as auditors and/or attorneys.