This past year, the healthcare boards have stepped up their investigations of healthcare workers who have been arrested for DUI. The Boards have contracted with a company to investigate the arrest of healthcare workers. What we are finding is that shortly after an arrest; healthcare workers are being notified by the Professional Health Monitoring Program (PHMP) that they may be eligible for the Voluntary Recovery Program (VRP). The letter will inform the licensee that he or she should schedule a drug and alcohol evaluation with an approved evaluator, typically within seven (7) days. Failure to schedule this evaluation will result in your VRP file being closed and your information forwarded to the Department of State's Legal Division for further review and appropriate action.
If you are found to be eligible for the VRP, you will be monitored for three (3) years.
- You will be required to refrain from using alcohol and all mind altering drugs.
- You will be required to call in daily for three (3) years to determine if you will be required to give a urine screen. A participant is typically selected to give a urine screen 2 to 4 times per month.
- You will be required to participate in drug and alcohol counseling.
- You will be required to attend AA or NA meetings, usually 3 times per week.
- Your employer must be notified of your participation in the VRP and they will be required to submit quarterly reports to the VRP.
- There may also be restrictions placed on your ability to practice you profession.
Failure to adhere to VRP rules can result in a suspension of your license.
If you have been arrested for DUI or any other crime, it is important that you obtain the services of a criminal attorney who is familiar with the licensing law.
In the alternative, I can assist your criminal attorney and yourself with regards to all issues involving your healthcare license.
I have been representing healthcare professionals in licensing matters and criminal matters for over 25 years.
It is important that you contact me when you receive this letter from the PHMP and before you schedule the evaluation.
The results of that evaluation will have an impact on your ability to continue practicing your profession.
On many occasions, the healthcare profession who is arrested for a DUI does not have an alcohol or substance abuse problem. It is important that you know your rights and that you are under no obligation to attend this evaluation.