Arizona Behavioral Health Board Criminal Reporting
A.R.S. 32-3208 requires that behavioral health professional licensees and applicants for a behavioral health professional license must report misdemeanor criminal charges involving conduct that may affect patient safety or a felony to the Arizona Behavioral Health Board within 10 working days after the charge is filed. A working day would be considered Monday through Friday.
Failure to report a reportable criminal charge within 10 business days is a violation of the Arizona Medical Practice Act and could result in Arizona Behavioral Health Board Probation.
What Current and Past Crimes Must You Report?
A felony must be reported within 10 days of being charged. The following types of a misdemeanor or other criminal histories are crimes that have been determined by the Board to be reportable pursuant to A.RS § 32-3208:
- Assault and Related Offenses
- Theft and Related Offenses
- Fraud, Deceit, and Related Offenses
- Abuse, Neglect, Exploitation of a Child or Vulnerable Adult, and Related Offenses
- Sexual and Related Offenses
- Drug and/or Alcohol Related Offenses
- Arson and Related Offenses
- Animal Abuse, Cruelty and Related Offenses
Failure to report a reportable criminal charge within 10 business days is a violation of the Arizona Medical Practice Act and could result in disciplinary action with the Arizona Behavioral Health Board or a specific related Committee.
DUI Criminal History
Behavioral health professionals, who contact our office frequently ask our attorneys if state law allows a behavioral health professional with a DUI crime or conviction to get a license with the Arizona Behavioral Health Board. The short answer is yes. An Arizona Behavioral Health Professional DUI will not necessarily prevent a behavioral health professional from obtaining a license or a career in the health field. However, the Board (which handles all complaints) has a public policy on their website which covers the details of what circumstances behavioral health professionals with a case that resulted in a felony DUI criminal conviction can get a license.
Disclosing a Criminal Record for an Arizona Applicant
If a behavioral health professional license applicant is not required to disclose a legal misdemeanor DUI, the Arizona State Board can still have the authority to initiate an investigation based upon the results of a health care fingerprint background check. The Board will then contact the behavioral health professional and initiate an investigation in their practice utilizing the law of Arizona. This license investigation determines whether the physician is a danger to the public, has any medical or mental health problems, and whether the behavioral health professional has rehabilitated in the time since the criminal misdemeanor DUI or DUI charges occurred. Simply, the Board wants to know whether the applicant can provide safe medical care with a past criminal case involving alcohol or substance abuse.
State Criminal Record and Convictions
One question our attorneys are frequently asked is whether state law allows a behavioral health professional with a felony criminal background to get a license with the Arizona Behavioral Health Board? The short answer is, yes. A past felony for behavioral health professionals will not necessarily prevent a behavioral health professional from obtaining a license or a career in the medical field. However, the Board has a public policy on its website that covers the details of under what circumstances a behavioral health professional with a case that resulted in a criminal sentence can get a license.
Criminal Charges for Professionals Can Result in a Meeting
When a professional applies to the Arizona Behavioral Health Board, they must disclose a felony criminal court sentence (and other similar offenses) on their application. A behavioral health professional must self-report a felony no matter how much time or how many years have passed since the conviction. After self-reporting occurs, the Board contacts the behavioral health professional and initiates an investigation utilizing the law of Arizona. The investigation helps to determine whether the medical professional is a danger to the public, has any medical or mental health problems and whether the behavioral health professional has rehabilitated in the time since the criminal incident occurred. Simply put, the Board wants to know whether the behavioral health professional applicant can provide safe medical care.
Behavioral Health Board Probation Information
When a behavioral health professional faces Arizona Behavioral Health Board Probation the probation is offered through a Consent Agreement. The Consent Agreement requires the behavioral health professional to do certain things (drug testing, work supervision, counseling, continuing education). Or alternatively, refrain from doing things (using alcohol, prescribing scheduled drugs, seeing certain patients, etc.). The Arizona Behavioral Health Board can place physicians on probation through:
- Consent Agreement with Probation
Behavioral health professionals who hold a license in Arizona can face disciplinary actions by the Arizona Behavioral Health Board for many different reasons. If the Behavioral Health Board determines formal licensing action is necessary it will happen after the completion of an investigation. It’s the job of the Board to review any complaint alleging a violation of the Arizona Medical Practice Act and Arizona law. Thus, at an Arizona Behavioral Health Board Meeting, the Board will vote to determine the outcome of each investigation, thus, a defense attorney may be needed. The Board can vote on a non-disciplinary outcome or vote to offer the behavioral health professional formal discipline.
Mental Health Facilities Attorney
If you’re interested in learning more about our Arizona Behavioral Health Board Attorney services and how to protect your license, set up a consultation with Chelle Law today.