Arizona Board of Osteopathic Examiners Complaint – Disposition

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The Arizona Board of Osteopathic Examiners in Medicine and Surgery (“Board”) oversee all investigations and complaints regarding Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (“DO”) licensed to practice in Arizona. The Board has issued guidelines into the investigative process. An investigation by the Board is initiated through; 1) a complaint is filed against a physician, 2) voluntary reporting, 3) or when other organizations are required by law to report a possible violation to the Board. The Board has published Investigative Procedure Guidelines that list seven distinct stages of the complaint process. The stages are as follows:

1. Notification of an Investigation
2. Processing of Information
3. Board Review
4. Case Review
5. Investigative Hearing
6. Formal Administrative Hearing
7. Disposition of Cases

This post will examine the last stage of the complaint process; Disposition of Cases. A general time-line for the Disposition of Cases stage is as follows:

1. Once the case is decided by the Board, the final disposition is made public record.
2. Each party involved in the investigation receives written notice of the disposition of the matter.
3. Cases that are dismissed will remain in the public record for three years.
4. Cases that result in a Letter of Concern will be placed in the public record for five years.
5. All cases that result in disciplinary action are finalized as an Order and are placed permanently in the public record.

Any physician under investigation must stay proactive. Contact an attorney as soon as possible, respond to the investigation respectfully and address the Board deferentially. Being under investigation can be an intimidating process, but it is important that every physician stays calm. Posting messages on internet forums (which happens more than you would think) is a bad idea. Beyond appealing a Board decision to the Superior Court, the Board ultimately determines your fate and showing respect, is in my opinion, one of the most important things a physician can do during an investigation.

If you have any questions about an Arizona Board of Osteopathic Examiners in Medicine and Surgery complaint contact Attorney Robert Chelle.