The Law Offices of Brian E. Quinn

Medical Licensing Archives

Professional license defense is neither civil nor criminal law

What do physician assistants, doctors, and athletic trainers have in common? The Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine regulates the licensure, registration and certification of each of these professionals. The Board also responds to complaints and may take disciplinary action, such as suspending a health care worker’s professional license.

#whataday: Social media and your nursing license

Like many of your friends on social media, you probably share your reflections of your day, your family or your job. A stressful day with a co-worker may compel you to vent on Facebook, and an emotional encounter with a patient may inspire you to tweet a message of hope.

PA SENATE PASSES A BILL REQUIRING PHYSICIANS AND OTHER LICENSEES TO REPORT ARREST

The PA State Senate passed a Bill that would require physicians, accountants, and others who hold a license, certificate or registration from the Pennsylvania Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs to report arrests or professional disciplinary sanctions against them within thirty (30) days. This Bill would also set guidelines for the Bureau in suspending and revoking licenses. Under SB 354, if an incident is not reported within thirty (30) days, the Licensing Board could take disciplinary action. SB 354 still needs to be approved by the House to become law.

What behaviors may trigger an inquiry before the medical board?

In an increasingly mobile and technological society, modern medicine follows suit. For example, a medical doctor may be licensed in multiple states. Although doctors have private lives, the reaches of social media are broad, possibly encroaching on those boundaries. These realities may also raise novel professional license concerns.

What disciplinary issues most threaten nursing licenses?

Like other licensed health professionals, nurses are subject to oversight by the Pennsylvania Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs. The Bureau has 29 professional licensing boards, commissions or other entity forms with the authority to suspend or take other disciplinary actions against licensed workers. For nurses, the entity is the PA Board of Nursing.

Do ethical gray areas endanger your medical license?

According to a 2016 survey, several common issues top the list of ethical challenges commonly encountered by Americans. In light of the increased scrutiny afforded to opioid pain medications, many doctors worry about overprescribing pain medication.

What types of medical misconduct might prompt a formal complaint?

When does a doctor’s behavior rise to the level of professional misconduct? At a minimum, a complaint filed with the applicable licensing board, such as the Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine, Nursing, Dentistry, or Pharmacy, must allege more than just dissatisfaction with fees or a doctor’s attitude.

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