Depending on the complexity of the complaint, the investigative process may take several months, or even up to a year or longer to complete. Your patience is appreciated during this process.
- Investigations are confidential. Immediately after receipt of a formal written complaint, an acknowledgment email will be sent to the complainant. When an investigator is assigned to the complaint, they may or may not contact you for supplemental information. You may be asked to provide further information, such as documentation, physical evidence, or clarification of the information that you have already provided. Interviews are conducted with the complainant when deemed necessary.
- The investigator may interview the licensee or applicant, and employer(s), in addition to obtaining documentation and records. Complaints and/or investigations are not public information- investigations are confidential. Upon completing an investigation the investigator prepares an investigative summary of the case. The investigation may take as little as a few weeks or several months, and varies case by case.
- An Investigative Liaison (Board Member) will review and make a recommendation such as: close unsubstantiated, close with caution, or formal discipline such as a consent agreement (suspension, ethics, supervision, revocation, etc.), or the liaison may even ask for additional information from the investigator. The Investigative Liaison and Deputy Director review the cases.
- When the professional standards committee meets every other month, the Deputy Director presents the recommendation of the Investigative Liaison. The committee then will vote to accept the recommendations.
- When an investigation indicates that a violation appears to have occurred and formal action is required, the board may seek to negotiate a Consent Agreement, which must be approved by both the licensee/applicant and the Board. The licensee has the option to accept the consent agreement terms or reject them. The consent agreement usually contains the applicable regulatory language, and any disciplinary action(s) agreed upon. The Board will approve the consent agreement at the first regularly scheduled meeting following receipt of the signed consent agreement. Disciplinary action is posted on the board’s website, and reported to the National Practitioner Data Bank. (The committee does not offer a consent agreement in all cases; some may go directly to a Notice of Opportunity for Hearing.)
- If the licensee/applicant and the Board are not able to negotiate an acceptable consent agreement, the Board may file formal charges, which are presented in a document titled “Notice of Opportunity for Hearing.” If the Board approves such charges, the licensee/applicant may request a public administrative hearing.
- If an administrative hearing is scheduled, the person who filed the complaint may be subpoenaed as a witness to provide testimony. In such a case, the Assistant Attorney General assigned to the Board will assist and guide the preparation of witness testimony and presentation of documentation. The licensee/applicant also has the right to call witnesses and present evidence and examine the complainant.
- All testimony and evidence used during a formal administrative hearing is considered a public record. The public record can be viewed by any individual who requests to do so. Medical records (including mental health treatment records) are typically protected and will not become a public record unless under order of a court.
- As a result of the hearing the Board may determine what disciplinary action may be required/appropriate to address the concerns, if any. The licensee/applicant has the right to appeal the Board’s decision through the courts.
- Complainants, and licensees/applicants, are notified in writing regarding the outcome of the investigation after
the Board decision.
- Board meetings are held every other month beginning in January; dates are posted on the front page of the Board’s website. The Professional Standards Committee meetings usually begin at 9 a.m. on Thursday and/or Friday, and the full Board meeting is usually later in the afternoon. Board meetings are open to the public.