Healthcare Professionals and Mandatory Reporting of Misdemeanors

Healthcare Professional

If you hold a professional license related to healthcare in Arizona, you may be required to self-report an arrest or a conviction to your licensing board. For example, A.R.S. 32-3208(A), which deals with “health professionals”, requires that:

“A health professional who has been charged with a misdemeanor involving conduct that may affect patient safety or a felony after receiving or renewing a license or certificate must notify the health professional’s regulatory board in writing within ten working days after the charge is filed.”

The definition of a “health professional” is pretty broad, including doctors, nurses, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, and so on.

So if you are a health professional, you must self-report within 10 working days of when the charge is filed. Notice it does not say within 10 days of a conviction. Even if the charge is ultimately dismissed, you are still required to report the charge to your licensing board, and your licensing board may do their own investigation.

 If you fail to report, and your regulatory board finds out about it, they will consider it an act of “unprofessional conduct” and may sanction you with a find of up to $1,000.00.. See A.R.S. 32-3208(D).

The confusing part of this statute is, what constitutes a “misdemeanor involving conduct that may affect patient safety”? Most licensing boards will put out a list. The Arizona Medical Board’s list is published here. Some reportable misdemeanors may not be surprising, like assault, kidnapping, theft, fraud, misconduct involving weapons or explosives, sexual offenses, drug-related crimes, and DUI. Others are more surprising, like disorderly conduct, not exhibiting a business license, or improperly maintaining a stallion or jack.

The takeaway here is that if you are a healthcare professional, and you are charged with a crime, you should consult with both your criminal attorney, and an attorney who represents professionals before regulatory boards, so that you can make an informed decision on how to proceed.

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