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IL license defense lawyerMembers of the medical community are held to an incredibly high standard. Due to the manner in which an error or negligent act can impact a patient, a mistake can cost a medical employee their medical license. Here in the state of Illinois, the Illinois Medical Disciplinary Board is in charge of responding to complaints made against medical personnel. Every year, the Disciplinary Board receives approximately 3,000 complaints. If a complaint is filed against you, it is important to act quickly and seek out legal guidance immediately.

Mistakes That Could Cost You

Medical professionals are under an incredible amount of pressure. Long hours, rigorous work days, and the pressure of life or death operations, are all aspects of life as a medical worker. Due to the stressors of medical work, it is not uncommon for mistakes to occur. Listed below are some of the most common mistakes, that could potentially cost you your medical license.

Medical Error: When patients enter a medical facility, they are putting their complete trust into the hands of the doctors and nurses, alike. While this trust is usually rewarded through quality care, in the vast majority of cases, medical error is entirely possible. Medical mistakes can range from delays in treatment, failure to correctly diagnose a condition, and incorrect prescription writeups. In some cases, errors such as overprescribing a patient, are intended actions. Regardless of the reasons why the mistake occurred, a medical error can cost you your license.

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IL license lawyerOne of the worst things that can happen to a doctor professionally is to be sued for medical malpractice. Malpractice suits can mean years of meetings, document production, and stress. A money judgment in favor of the patient in rare cases will mean that you will be on the hook financially. You may believe that your reputation has been tarnished, and it is possible that your malpractice insurance premiums will rise, sometimes to the point of hardship.

One consequence that is unlikely to happen is that you will lose your medical license to practice following a malpractice lawsuit. A malpractice lawsuit is initiated by a patient who alleges they have been injured due to a doctor’s negligence.

On the other hand, the Medical Disciplinary Board's purpose is to consider allegations of misconduct or malfeasance by members of the medical professions and to recommend appropriate discipline. Medical Board matters begin with a complaint. Sometimes the complaint is made by patients, but colleagues, agencies and employees could also make such a complaint.

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CA divorce lawyerSome of the highest rates of addiction among professionals are found among doctors and nurses. Both doctors and nurses must maintain professional licenses in order to practice, and these licenses can be taken away if a board determines that substance abuse is interfering with the performance of one’s job.

In these circumstances, hiring an attorney to represent you before the board will mean that you can feel confident your best case is being put forward and that you understand the process in which your license is at stake as well as your options moving forward.

Addiction in Healthcare Workers

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IL defense lawyerIt’s a letter you may never thought you’d open: a letter from the Illinois Medical Board telling you that a patient has filed a complaint against you. Maybe you feel betrayed by a patient who would not bring his complaints to you directly or maybe you are worried about the implications of such a complaint on your career and your practice.

Whatever your initial reaction, it is important to quickly get caught up to speed about what it will take to defend your medical license and resolve this situation.

  • Understand the scope of a complaint. The Federation of State Medical Boards reports that in 2012 in the United States, of 878,194 actively licensed physicians, 4,479 were disciplined. That number is less than 1 percent of all doctors in this country. In many circumstances simply having a complaint filed against you means that the state board will conduct an investigation, even if it is plain that the complaint is groundless.
  • Know what is at stake. Medical boards have great power over doctors' careers and livelihoods. These bodies can impose penalties that vary in severity from reprimands and fines to suspensions or revocations of medical licenses. Because of the range of punishments, it is helpful to speak with an attorney who understands this procedure and can discuss likely outcomes for the alleged acts.
  • Respond promptly. One of the first mistakes a doctor in this situation can make is not opening the letter or let the letter gather dust. Failing to respond can carry a second set of consequences, and it is unwise to do so. It is important that you take control of the situation in any way you can. Contacting a license defense attorney at this juncture can help you stay on the correct timeline and can mean that the defense you present will be uniform from the start of the process.
  • Know your weaknesses. During this time, it is imperative that you continue working at your practice, but that you do not receive any other complaints. Many doctors are surprised to find out that most complaints do not concern “bad doctoring” (incorrect diagnosis, poorly performed procedures, etc), but rather concern issues like billing, scheduling, confidentiality and possible criminal conduct.

Call an Illinois License Defense Lawyer

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IL defense lawyerProvider burnout is real, and it can have serious implications for your career. Many people who are at risk of losing their professional license are also burned out. Remaining motivated in your job is crucial to your overall success as well as keeping you from facing your profession’s governing body.

Signs of Burnout

  • Every day at work is a bad day;
  • You are tired all the time;
  • Your work becomes either overwhelming or very dull;
  • You feel that your work goes unnoticed; and
  • Caring about your job or home life seems like a waste of time.

How Can Burnout Affect Your Job

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Illinois license lawyerIt takes many years to master the medical field, by taking a certain number of classes and shadowing licensed medical physicians. Many years are put into the effort of understanding all topics of the human body and how it works. After all of the hard work of finally obtaining the medical physician’s license, there are ways that the status of the credentials and qualifications for the medical physician’s licensure is verified, and that the applicant is still in good standing. It is very important to know for sure that you meet the requirements for licensure, as to avoid any potential legal issues in the future.

The License Verification Process

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) states that all applications must independently verify their qualifications for licensure. This is to make sure that all credentials are authentic. Credentials that have already been verified can be submitted from any organization where the requirements have been met, or the Federation Credentials Verification Service (FCVS). It is not mandatory for applicants to submit the FCVS profile, as it is not required to obtain your medical physician’s license.

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continuing education requirementsEarning a license to practice medicine takes a lot of time and effort. With all of the hours put into the hard work, every minute counts. In order to maintain good standing as a practicing medical doctor, there are many requirements that need to be met, including continuing education. The time and effort made for the purpose of continuing education are monumental for the practicing medical doctor’s license to stay valid.

Requirements for Continuing Medical Education

Practicing medical doctors may randomly be selected by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation for an audit and to provide proof and evidence of CME credits. Therefore, it is very important for doctors to keep records of their CME activities, even though it is not required.

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Illinois medical license defense attorneyThere are benefits to volunteering your medical expertise or services, whether it be at a free or mobile clinic, a medical relief group, an international disaster area, or with a local school or sports team. Unfortunately, there are also risks involved, including the potential of legal or medical licensing issues. Because of this, it is important that physicians understand the risks, and how to best protect themselves.

Good Samaritan Laws

Many healthcare professionals believe they are legally required to assist in an emergency under the Good Samaritan Law, but this law is not as much of a requirement as it is a mode of protection. While, yes, certain situations may bind you by law to help, you are not always obligated to assist a stranger in peril. But if you do choose to help, you have at least some protection under this law. However, there are some limitations that you must be aware of:

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Illinois medical license defense lawyerAs a physician, you are held to a higher standard, and you are expected to act professionally in both your professional and personal life. Of course, you are only human and are bound to make mistakes, just like everyone else. Unfortunately, if you make one that leads to criminal charges, it could place more than just your reputation at risk; it might also impact the status of your Illinois medical license.

Criminal Charges and Moral Turpitude

Moral turpitude is defined as any action that could be deemed contrary to society’s view of justice, honesty, or morality. Generally, it is the state’s medical board that decides what qualifies as moral turpitude for its physicians. Unfortunately, that can leave a lot of room for error. There are a few criminal charges that frequently result in an investigation or adverse licensing action for physicians, however. These include:

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