Arizona Board of Physician Assistants Criminal Reporting: Board Defense for AZ Physician Assistants
A.R.S. 32-3208 requires that physician assistant licensees and applicants for a physician assistant license must report misdemeanor criminal charges involving conduct that may affect patient safety or a felony to the Arizona Board of Physician Assistants 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 law and could result in probation and a review of the physicians assistants criminal records.
What Current and Past Crimes Must Be Reported by a PA?
A felony must be reported within 10 days of being charged. The following types of 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 law and could result in disciplinary action which could result in Arizona Board of Physician Assistants.
DUI Criminal History and Arizona Statutes
Physician assistants who contact our office frequently ask our attorney’s if state law allows a physician assistant with a DUI crime or conviction to get a license with the Arizona Board of Physician Assistants? The short answer is yes. A pa DUI will not necessarily prevent a physician assistant from obtaining a license or a career in the health field. However, the Board (which handles all complaints) has a public policy (updated as of September 2020) on their website which covers the details of what circumstances physician assistant with a case that resulted in a felony DUI criminal conviction can get a license.
Disclosing a Criminal Record for a License Applicant
If a medical license applicant is not required to disclose a legal misdemeanor DUI, the AZ Board can still initiate an investigation based upon the results of a health care fingerprint background check. The Board will then contact the medical professional and initiate an investigation in their practice utilizing the law of Arizona law. This license investigation determines whether the physician assistant is a danger to the public, has any medical or mental health problems and whether the physician assistant 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. You will also have to disclose the records to the department.
Criminal Record and Convictions Information
One question our attorneys are frequently asked is whether state law allows a medical professional with a felony criminal background to get a license with the Arizona Board of Physician Assistants? The short answer is, yes. An Arizona Felony for physician assistants will not necessarily prevent a physician assistant from obtaining a license or a career in the medical field. However, the Board has a public policy on their website which covers the details of under what circumstances a physician assistant with a case that resulted in a criminal sentence can get a license.
Criminal Charges for Physician Assistant with the Arizona Board
When a professional applies to the Arizona Board of Physician Assistants, they must disclose a felony criminal court sentence (and other similar offenses) on their application. A physician assistant 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 physician assistant and initiates an investigation utilizing the law of the AZ Medical Practice Act. 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 physician assistant has rehabilitated in the time since the criminal incident occurred. Simply put, the Medical Board wants to know whether the physician assistant applicant can provide safe medical care.
Board of Physician Assistants Probation
When a physician assistant faces Arizona Board of Physician Assistants Probation the probation is offered through a Consent Agreement. The Consent Agreement requires the physician assistant to do certain things (drug testing, work supervision, counseling, continuing education). Or alternatively, refrain from doing things (using alcohol, prescribing schedule drugs, seeing certain patients, etc.). The Arizona Board of Physician Assistants can place physician assistants on probation through:
- Stipulated Rehabilitation Agreement
- Interim Practice Restriction
- Decree of Censure with Probation
- Letter of Reprimand with Probation
- Practice Limitation
Physician assistants who hold a license in Arizona can face disciplinary actions by the Arizona Board of Physician Assistants for many different reasons. If the Board of Physician Assistants 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 Board of Physician Assistants 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 physician assistant formal discipline which will affect the supervising physician relationship.
Arizona Board Attorney
If you’re interested in learning more about our Arizona Board of Physician Assistants Attorney services and how to protect your license, set up a consultation with Chelle Law today.