Elder & Good offers effective medical license defense before the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure and the State Medical Board of Ohio. As stated on our Firm Overview page, Chad Elder and Brian Good have combined their experiences and skills as a former Kentucky Medical Board litigation lawyer and a seasoned medical board defense attorney to provide top-notch medical license defense to their physician clients in Kentucky and Ohio. We have successfully defended doctors during medical board investigations, disciplinary hearings, administrative appeals, criminal prosecutions, hospital actions and exclusion issues with third party payors, such as Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance companies.
Elder & Good attorneys are well equipped to provide effective medical license defense in Kentucky and Ohio for any disciplinary issue or complaint. The most common physician disciplinary issues and complaints our attorneys encounter and defend against include:
- Standard of care violations
- Illegal prescribing of controlled substances, including violations of House Bill One.
- Improper prescribing of controlled substances, such as unsupported early refills, duplicate prescriptions, overlapping prescriptions, prescribing to family members, prescribing to a romantic partner and self-prescribing
- Failure to comply with Board policies pertaining to periodic KASPER reviews, pill counts, drug screens, controlled substance agreements and other mechanisms for screening against drug abuse, doctor shopping or pharmacy shopping
- Sexual misconduct or boundary violations, including a sexual relationship or any sexual contact with a patient or employee (whether or not consensual), sexually explicit language or language that can be considered to be a sexual proposition to a patient, or providing any medical treatment (including prescribing a controlled substance) for an individual not technically considered to be a patient but with whom there is a sexual relationship
- Alcohol and drug addiction and abuse
- Drug diversion
- Documentation errors and deficiencies
- Malpractice actions (even if settled with no admission of liability)
- Criminal convictions
In addition, we have successfully assisted physicians with licensing and application issues. Some examples of licensing and application issues include:
- Assisting out of state doctors obtain their temporary or full medical license
- Assisting physicians obtain or renew a medical license despite a criminal conviction, hospital disciplinary history (including probation or suspension of privileges), alcohol or drug abuse, addiction or dependency issue or formal board disciplinary action occurring in another state
- Assisting physicians obtain reinstatement of a medical license after suspension or revocation by the Medical Board or after allowing a license to lapse for a prolonged period of time
- Assisting physicians obtain modifications of restrictions or limitations placed on their medical licenses by the Medical Board as a result of disciplinary action
- Assisting doctors in having agreed orders and consent decrees terminated
- Assisting doctors in terminating their involvement with organizations that monitor and assist them with alcohol and chemical dependency issues, such as the Kentucky Physicians Health Foundation (KPHF), after documented and successful participation in the program.
Why Hire an Attorney?
If you are under criminal investigation or charged with a crime, would you represent yourself? If you were the subject of a civil lawsuit, such as a malpractice action, would you represent yourself? A prudent physician would retain an attorney with experience and expertise in those areas of law.
If your medical license and livelihood were in jeopardy due to a medical board investigation or formal medical board disciplinary action, would you represent yourself?
- Do you have experience in dealing effectively with medical board investigators and board attorneys?
- Have you ever negotiated with a medical board attorney regarding an appropriate outcome of a grievance filed against you?
- Do you have experience in knowing a great resolution of a medical board investigation or action from a poor resolution?
- Are you familiar with the collateral consequences of certain medical board agreements, such the impact an agreement could have on your relationship with Medicare, Medicaid and insurance companies or on the status of your hospital privileges or employment?
- Do you know the concrete and proactive steps you can take during a medical board investigation to avoid formal disciplinary action even if the Board attorney can prove a violation?
- Do you have legal experience?
- Do you know what evidence and documents you are entitled to review relating to a medical board investigation or action?
- Do you know how to conduct a formal disciplinary hearing, what evidence is admissible in a hearing, or how to preserve certain errors for appeal to a court of law?
- In short, a medical board investigation or formal medical board disciplinary proceeding can be every bit as complex and adversarial as a criminal action or a civil lawsuit.
If you are a physician under investigation by the Kentucky Medical Board or the Ohio Medical Board, it is imperative that you consult with a medical license defense attorney immediately upon being contacted by a medical board representative. Of course, the same holds true if you are contacted by law enforcement pertaining to a criminal investigation or by government authorities pertaining to Medicare, Medicaid or other federal or state reimbursement programs.
You should never make any statements to a medical board investigator, law enforcement officer or other government agent in Kentucky or Ohio without a medical license defense attorney. We strongly advise you to respectfully decline a meeting, interview, or telephonic conversation or to provide a written response to an inquiry without retaining a medical licence defense lawyer. When you retain a medical license defense attorney, the medical board, law enforcement and government agents investigating you will be advised of your representation and prohibited from contacting and questioning you directly. Should you retain Elder & Good attorneys to defend your medical license, any questioning or exchange of information with the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure or the State Medical Board of Ohio will go through us.
While it is tempting for a physician to believe that he or she can engage Kentucky or Ohio medical board members in a friendly and professional dialogue to work out any concerns about his or her medical practice or conduct, the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure and the State Medical Board of Ohio simply do not operate in that manner. If a physician attempts to contact a Kentucky or Ohio Medical Board member directly about a pending investigation relating to a medical license, the inquiry will be diverted to the legal and investigative department.
Moreover, on some occasions the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure will invite a physician to attend a scheduled meeting of the medical board to defend his or her medical license at the conclusion of a medical board investigation. Often, the Kentucky Medical Board is deciding whether to issue a formal complaint initiating litigation and/or an emergency order of restriction or suspension against a medical license. We recommend that a doctor attend such a medical board meeting in Kentucky or Ohio, or have contact with any medical board personnel, only with and through medical license defense attorneys.
First, it is important to note that the physician is subject to questioning by any medical board member present about any subject, as well as questioning by its attorney. Second, your statements will be recorded. Sometimes a physician will candidly admit an error and steps he or she has taken or will take to avoid the same error, or alternatively, the physician may innocently or unintentionally characterize the allegation as less serious than the board members or staff view it. Unfortunately, some of these well intentioned doctors who believed they were providing candid responses to relatively minor infractions found themselves the subject of a formal medical board complaint and an emergency order of restriction or suspension after addressing the medical board without a medical license defense attorney.
In fact, a medical board attorney can utilize during subsequent hearings the audio recording of the physician’s statement made to the medical board members as proof that the physician committed a violation or that he is a danger to his patients. In short, we strongly urge a doctor under investigation by the Kentucky or Ohio medical boards to retain experienced medical license defense attorneys at the onset of a medical board investigation to work and speak on their behalf.
When you contact Elder & Good attorneys at the onset of a Kentucky or Ohio Medical Board investigation, we are able to defend your medical license through the entire disciplinary process. We engage in medical license defense for physicians during medical board investigations in several ways. We deal directly with the Kentucky and Ohio medical board attorneys and investigators, handling all correspondence and communication with them. We also obtain and evaluate the evidence against the doctor, assess the strength and weakness of the evidence, collect important documents that may be vital to defending a medical license and, most importantly, attempt to ward off a formal medical board complaint by negotiating a favorable resolution during the investigative stage. Often, retaining an appropriate expert to review patient charts, advising physicians to undergo certain evaluations or advising doctors to take certain Kentucky or Ohio Medical Board approved classes and courses during a medical board investigation will prove critical in warding off a formal medical board complaint and discipline.
A case will be resolved during the investigative stage, or at any other stage, only if the physician believes it is in his or her best interest after a thorough vetting of the case, during which we weigh the evidence and explore every possible medical license defense.
There are several advantages to resolving a case during a medical board investigation before a formal medical board complaint commencing litigation is filed. First, demonstrated flaws in the allegations, certain defenses or mitigating circumstances can sometimes result in the complete dismissal of an investigation or informal board action, such as a diversion agreement. Diversion agreements are confidential, not reported to the National Practitioner Data Base and not subject to scrutiny by third party payors, such as Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance companies. Second, physicians will expend less money on legal fees and expert witnesses. Third, physicians can avoid the common costs of reimbursing a state board for its costs of successfully prosecuting a case (including reimbursement for expert consultants and compensation for hearing officers). Fourth, a speedy resolution can facilitate employment opportunities for doctors who cannot obtain employment while under investigation or formal medical board complaint in Kentucky or Ohio.
Of course, there are cases that simply cannot be resolved during the medical board investigation process in Kentucky or Ohio. Moreover, in some instances, a physician who is the subject of a medical board investigation fails to retain a medical license defense attorney until after the medical board initiates litigation and/or an emergency restriction or suspension against the physician’s medical license. Elder & Good lawyers are experienced at engaging in medical license defense midstream before the medical boards in Kentucky and Ohio. In such cases, we have negotiated favorable settlements, or alternatively, conducted medical board hearings with favorable results.
However, in order to maximize the benefits of engaging us for medical license defense in Kentucky or Ohio, you should contact Elder & Good attorneys immediately upon learning that you are under investigation and especially before you make any statements — verbal or written — to medical board investigators or law enforcement.
Elder & Good attorneys offer effective medical license defense before the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure and the State Medical Board of Ohio. Contact us to learn more.