Tag Archive for: Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney

How to Know When to Negotiate a Favorable Disposition or Defend Against the Charges

Developing an effective defense strategy against allegations of professional licensing misconduct starts with a detailed examination of the circumstances. There cannot be a practical method to devise a winning defense strategy without a comprehensive review of the claims and the factual underpinnings.

Understanding the facts and circumstances of the charges is important and it is important to conduct a complete investigation to uncover the strengths and weaknesses of the government’s case. Sometimes a thorough investigation will reveal that the best strategy is to negotiate a favorable disposition of the action. In other circumstances, the better solution is to defend the Accused until the bitter end.

Our professional licensing attorney will have several considerations to analyze before notifying a client of the feasible outcome of the disciplinary action. Any licensing defense attorney who represents a client has the duty of advising the client about all of the possible avenues the litigation and all potential outcomes of each avenue. The license defense attorney will also advise the client about the benefits and pitfalls of each choice.

Inexperienced attorneys often fail to provide their clients with a complete analysis of their cases. Those attorneys often dump the decisions on the client. Of course, the client ultimately makes the decision in the end. However, an effective legal representative will talk through each scenario to flush out the best potential outcome.

Our seasoned professional licensing attorney will evaluate her client’s tolerance for risk prior to advising the client on a particular defense strategy. There are few clients who want to “roll the dice” and see what occurs at their full hearing. But most people are more cautious and want to reduce their exposure. 

The question is: how do you know which direction to go?

Naturally, the answer to this question is not always an absolute certainty. The professional licensing attorney has to advise their client entirely and answer all of the legal questions that the client has at the time. Moreover, no one is bound to a course of action after a decision is made on a defense strategy. There are times when a hybrid approach is the best option.

In some cases, clients will ask their attorney to negotiate the best disposition possible in their case. An experienced licensing attorney would negotiate with the prosecuting attorney to arrive at an arrangement that is in your best interest. If no agreement can be reached, then you and your attorney will need to evaluate the situation. In many cases, defending the case until the very end is the best option and produces the best results 

Discuss All of Your Options with A Trusted Professional Licensing Advocate

Missouri and Kansas Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger has a well-earned reputation as a trusted advocate for professional licensees. You could rely on her experience and expertise to guide you through a difficult and challenging juncture in your career. Call Attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to find out more.

Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Discusses Considerations Regarding Disciplinary Action: How to Know When to Fight the Charges or Negotiate a Favorable Disposition

Developing effective strategies for defending against allegations of professional licensing misconduct begins with a thorough analysis of the facts and circumstances. Without a comprehensive understanding of the claims and the factual underpinnings for them, then there is no practical method of devising a winning defense strategy.

Understanding all of the facts after conducting a complete investigation will uncover the strengths and weaknesses of the government’s case, i.e., the licensing authority, as well as the viability of defending against the case at a full hearing on the merits. Sometimes a thorough investigation reveals that the best option is to negotiate a favorable disposition of the action. In other instances, the better option is to fight until the bitter end.

An experienced professional licensing attorney has numerous considerations to analyze before advising a client on the possible outcome of the disciplinary action. Any attorney representing a client has the duty imposed upon him or her by the ethics of the legal profession to advise his or her client about all of the possible avenues the litigation could take and the potential outcomes of each avenue. The attorney must further advise his or her client about the benefits and pitfalls of each choice.

An inexperienced attorney might stop there and allow the client to consider the pros and cons of each decision and remove himself or herself from the analysis. Dumping the decision all on the client is not advocating; it is scapegoating. The client must make the ultimate decision in the end. However, the effective advocate will talk through each scenario and the permutations to flush out the best potential outcome.

The seasoned professional licensing attorney will evaluate his or her client’s tolerance for risk before advising the client on a particular defense stratagem.  Some clients might want to “roll the dice” and see what happens after a full hearing. Other people are more cautious and need to reduce their exposure to harm. The more risk-averse clients might feel that negotiating a favorable disposition is more advantageous than risking it all after a hearing.

The “gambling” types do not always benefit from litigating the complaint on its merits. Similarly, the risk-averse might not achieve the best result from negotiating a resolution. The question that necessarily follows is: how do you know what to do?

Naturally, the answer is never an absolute certainty. The professional licensing lawyer must advise her or his client entirely and answer all of the questions that the client might have at the time. No one is necessarily bound to a course of action once a decision is made on a defense strategy. Sometimes a hybrid approach is the best option.

An experienced professional licensing attorney might seek your permission to negotiate the best disposition possible. Your licensing attorney could negotiate with the prosecuting attorney and arrive at an agreement that is in your best interest. If there is no agreement to be had, because, for example, the prosecuting authority wants you to admit to wrongdoing to achieve a favorable outcome and you do not believe you did anything wrong, then you would need to evaluate the situation. In that instance, defending the case until the end might be the best option. For others, they might consider licensing discipline to be a business decision and accept the best option that allows them to continue working in their chosen profession without significant penalties.

Discuss All of Your Options with A Trusted Professional Licensing Advocate

Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger has a well-earned reputation as a trusted advocate for professional licensees. You could rely on her experience and expertise to guide you through a difficult and challenging juncture in your career. Call Attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to find out more.

Privileged Communications in Missouri

The state of Missouri recognizes that a fiduciary duty exists on behalf of the physician or another medical professional, including psychologists, to maintain confidentiality of the patient’s records. However, as with all jurisdictions, Missouri recognizes a common law exception to the presumption that all communications are privileged when the privilege holder, that is the patient, presents a serious danger or threat of violence as judged by the standards of the profession. A breach of that fiduciary duty exposes a physician or another medical professional who is duty-bound under Missouri law to maintain a patient-treatment provider privilege exposes the professional to civil liability and professional licensing discipline as well.

There are of course times when a psychologist or other professional bound to maintain confidences must disclose the communication. A general alarm that a person might be a threat is insufficient. Instead, the psychologist, doctor, or mental health professional must believe that there is a potential victim who is readily identifiable and, in that case may warn the potential victim or law enforcement authorities to prevent the harm from occurring.

The recognized exception to presumption that communications are  privileged illustrates how important the rule is in Missouri. Even in circumstances in which a woman expressed a suicidal threat and sped on the wrong side of the highway, the psychologist was justified in not disclosing the patient’s wishes because there was no specific target without the written consent of the privilege holder.

Before treatment may begin, Missouri law requires treatment providers to obtain the informed consent of their patients to begin therapy. The informed consent of the patient must be recorded by the treatment provider. The informed consent of the patient sets the limits of treatment to be provided and delineates the boundaries of the patient-provider relationship. A discussion of those boundaries must include information about patient confidentiality and the legal limitations of patient confidentiality.

Patients must be informed that Missouri law resumes communications between therapists and patients are privileged. Moreover, the patient must understand that information may be disclosed if the provider receives the informed consent of the patient. The presumption has its limitations. The first limitation, as discussed above, pertains to an emergency situation in which the patient’s life or the life of an identifiable person is in imminent danger. In this circumstance, the psychologist “shall” disclose only necessary information to prevent harm.

Interpreters present a unique problem relative to privileged communications. The client or patient must give informed consent to use an interpreter and the provider must take all steps necessary to prevent disclosure of reports and diagnostic test results.

The treatment provider must also take special care to carefully explain the limitations of the privilege when treating a minor. The limitations on the privilege for a minor are the same for an adult in Missouri.

Couples therapy presents another significant problem regarding confidentiality. Missouri law instructs a treatment provider to discuss the limitations of confidentiality with all people participating in therapy.

Treatment providers must also inform their clients that they might discuss their patients’ cases with other professionals for the express purpose of providing the appropriate treatment to the patient. The psychologist cannot simply blurt out the information. Instead, Missouri law requires the psychologist to inform his or her colleagues that the information provided is confidential to ensure further that the collaborators maintain confidentiality.

Avoid Disciplinary Action by Seeking Advice from an Experienced Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney

Missouri law treats violations of patient confidentiality seriously. Disclosure of patient confidences is unethical conduct, which is subject to disciplinary action pursuant to the Missouri Ethical Rules of Conduct. Anyone with a concern about the boundaries of the privilege or whether you are authorized to disclose confidences, you need to consult with Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger. Attorney Sanger will provide you with the legal advice you need to avoid allegations of unprofessional conduct. Contact Attorney Sanger today at 785-989-4353 today to learn more.

The Suicide of Nurse Underscores Pressures of Nursing Profession

News that a 35-year-old nurse working in the United Kingdom (U.K.) died by her own hand after working twelve-hour shifts following a promotion shocked and dismayed her coworkers. Sadly, the state of muring in the U.S. is very similar. Nurses work extraordinarily hard and are taking on more and more stress as medical resources are stretched thin.  Long, grueling shifts leave little time for socialization, stress management, and self-care. As time wears on mistakes are made due to the stress. Additionally, stressed-out medical personnel, especially nurses can turn to excessive alcohol consumption or abusing drugs as a means to relieve the insurmountable strain taking long shifts without the opportunity to take time off can have an on individual.

Kansas and Missouri professional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger has represented numerous medical professionals, including registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, nurse assistants, and nurse practitioners who encountered the destructive effects stress causes to a person’s life. Mismanaged or unmanaged stress leads to errors of judgment and could lead to a failure to live up to the character expected of a nurse. Attorney Sanger works with nurses of all types who are facing professional discipline brought about by the damaging effects of stress. Attorney Sanger works closely with her clients to get them back on their career path and resolve professional disciplinary issues favorably for her client.

The 35-year-old nurse from the U.K. received a promotion to senior staff nurse a mere six months before she hanged herself in her family home. The nurse worked in a hospital located in Manchester, England according to the New York Post. The nurse who died reportedly left a two-page handwritten suicide note wherein she describes in vivid detail her collapse into self-hatred and negativity. She described her emotions as a “downward spiral.”

Friends of the nurse say that they could see the terrible toll the promotion took on the woman. According to the woman’s friends, the nurse had a difficult time juggling work and a social life. The promotion bestowed upon her new responsibilities with which she struggled. One of the nurse’s college friends told a court reviewing the matter that maintaining a social life after the promotion was hard for her friend.

The nurse’s mother added another level of complexity to the situation in which the nurse found herself. The nurse’s mother told the court that the highly demanding job rendered her romantic life nearly impossible to maintain, Her mother said that the twelve-hours shift work thrust upon her subsequent to the promotion left her depressed and incapable of keeping a significant other in her life. The nurse experienced significant difficulty keeping a stable, long-term relationship. The nurse’s mother told the judicial tribunal that the nurse ended her most recent dating relationship simply by sending a text message.

Law enforcement authorities opened a coroner’s inquest into the nurse’s death. After a court hearing to determine the evidence surrounding the woman’s death, the court concluded that the nurse had killed herself by hanging and that the stress of her new job played a substantial role in the nurse’s decision to take her own life.

The coroner succinctly, albeit sadly, summed up the results of the inquest. The attending coroner said that the nurse experienced a substantial amount of stress that lasted for a very long time. The coroner added that the woman suffered from incredibly low self-esteem and, as a result, could not see herself as her family and friends saw her.

Help for Nurses Facing Professional Discipline

Contact Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger today if you are a nurse, doctor, dentist, or another medical professional facing discipline due to stress. Attorney Sanger is ready to help. Call Attorney Danielle Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a consultation.

What Happens if you are a Professional Licensee Charged with a Crime in Kansas or Missouri?

Professional and occupational license holders in Kansas and Missouri have a duty to hold themselves out as exemplary citizens in the community by virtue of their professional status. Professional and occupational licensees have a heightened responsibility, perhaps exceeding that of the average worker, because their chosen profession places them in a position in which people must rely upon their expertise, knowledge, and understanding in their profession or occupation. Additionally, the state issuing the professional or occupational license has a compelling interest to make sure that the public is safe. Therefore, most licensing boards have the statutory authority to issue professional discipline for violations of the criminal law. Accordingly, professional and occupational licensees must self-report to their respective licensing boards if they have been charged with a crime, irrespective of whether the charges arise within the jurisdiction in which they hold a license or in another state.

Not every individual charged with criminal behavior is a career criminal. Perhaps one of the charges with which professional and occupational licensees are charged is driving under the influence. Although driving under the influence of either alcohol or drugs is dangerous behavior and could call into question the judgment of the licensee because such a crime is inexcusable and utterly avoidable, police charge people from all walks of life with DUI, no matter the profession. Facing a DUI charge, for example, is embarrassing for the professional licensee, and could have a deleterious effect on the licensee’s ability to perform their job, due to license loss, the potential for incarceration, and the court-ordered rehabilitation, not to mention the damage to the reputation the licensee might experience. Notwithstanding, a professional or occupational licensee could recover professionally from a DUI charge if the licensee conducts himself or herself appropriately.

A person should conduct themselves appropriately with law enforcement officials at all times. Technological advances allow the police and by-standers to record interactions between police and the citizenry. Therefore, everyone, but especially professional and occupational licensees, must be respectful of the police, especially if the licensee does not agree with the officer’s decision to interact with him or her. The licensee should be aware that any recordings made of the interaction with police might be reviewed by a state licensing board and considered by the board when deciding whether the licensee must receive professional discipline.

Being polite and cooperative with the police does not mean the licensee must forfeit his or her rights as a person charged with a crime. On the contrary, professional and occupational licensees enjoy the same constitutional and statutory protections as every other person in Kansas or Missouri. Consequently, the licensee may wish his or her right to remain silent and not speak with police without counsel present or exercise a right to a phone call, for example. However, the licensee can be firm but polite when asserting his or her rights.

The licensee must be aware that speaking to the police without an attorney present is not advisable. Most people know that whatever he or she says to police could be admitted in evidence against him or her at a criminal trial. The admissibility of the statement in evidence at a criminal trial is subject to strict constitutional and statutory strictures. However, the body adjudicating professional disciplinary hearings might be able to consider those statements even though they were not admitted in a criminal trial. Therefore, the licensee should seek the advice of competent counsel before speaking to the police. Furthermore, licensees must contact an attorney as soon as possible after being charged with a crime to immediately start defending against the criminal allegations and allegations of professional misconduct.

Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger: Protecting the Rights of Professional and Occupational Licensees

Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger works closely with criminal defense attorneys to protect you and your family from the fallout caused by one ill-advised decision. Contact Attorney Danielle Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to find out more.


Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Explains Optometrist Licensing Discipline in Missouri

Optometrists practicing in Missouri play a significant role in healthcare. At first blush, the average person might not realize the significance of having a competent, ethical, and honest optometrist diagnose and treat eye conditions. The failure of an optometrist to diagnose and properly treat conditions of the eye will alter a patient’s life and possible rob that person of one of his or her senses. Accordingly, rigorous licensing requirements that ensure technical competence but also protect the public from sharp practices and guard against taking advantage of vulnerable clients.

Missouri professional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger — who is also admitted to the practice of law in Kansas — fully believes that every professional licensee facing discipline deserves the right to practice in his or her chosen profession and that a professional who makes a mistake should not be barred from practice. Every professional license should engage an attorney represent them as soon as the licensee learns about an investigation into his or her practice. However, not any attorney will suffice because professional disciplinary hearings are highly complex legal matters. Therefore, the professional licensee facing the threat of discipline should turn to a well-respected, experienced, and successful professional licensing attorney when contesting professional disciplinary proceedings.

Chapter 336 of the Revised Missouri Statutes governs the practice of optometry in the state. As such, Chapter 336 grants the Missouri State Board of Optometry (“the Board”) authority to establish and enforce licensing requirements to practice optometry in Missouri. Specifically, 336.110 describes in detail the grounds upon which the Board is justified in filing a complaint with the Missouri Administrative Hearing Commission against a practicing optometrist or deny licensure to an optometrist who applied to practice in Missouri.

Optometrists may be disciplined for numerous transgressions. Of course, the simple fact that the Board filed a complaint does not equate to guilt, but the occasion triggers certain rights and obligations of the licensee. An optometrist practicing in Missouri could face discipline for using controlled substances or alcohol to any degree such that imbibing interferes with the optometrist’s ability to use sound medical discretion.  Also, any criminal offense to which the licensee pleads guilty, nolo contendre, or is convicted that pertains to any of the functions of an optometrist is also a ground for discipline.

In addition, committing fraud, impersonating a licensee, assisting someone in an effort to violate the licensing law, fraudulently obtaining something of value, and incompetence are additional reasons the Board may be justified when filing a complaint about discipline against the optometrist. Additional grounds for disciplinary action include adverse disciplinary action taken by another jurisdiction, violating the public trust, false of misleading advertising, violation of the drug laws and regulations of Missouri or the United States, and failing to take precautions to prevent the spread of contagious disease.

If the Board learns of a violation of 336.110, then it has the discretion to file legal action before the Administrative Hearing Commission. The Administrative Hearing Commission will conduct a hearing, and if the government has sustained the allegations, then the Board has the discretion, pursuant to 336.110(3), to mete out discipline.

The Board has several options at its disposal when punishing a license holder. The statute affords the Board wide latitude when announcing its disciplinary decision. Despite the latitude, the statute seems to favor to censure or  probation, that is, place restrictions on the optometrist’s freedom to practice for no more than five years. The statute grants the Board authority to place restrictions on the practitioner’s license as it deems fit. Additionally, the Board may suspend the optometrist’s license for up to three years. The Board may revoke the practitioner’s license as well.

Are You An Professional Licensee in Missouri Facing Discipline?

Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger will provide you with the experience, savvy, and track record of success you need to protect your livelihood. Call Attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a consultation.

Professional Discipline Defense Attorney in Kansas and Missouri Advises Medical Professionals to Avoid Burnout and Fatigue to Reduce Potential Licensing Discipline

Medical care should revolve around the patient, and at one time, it did. Increased regulation, additional demands on time, mounting documentation, and other administrative obligations can distract medical professionals from performing their duties competently. Consequently, medical professionals have experienced burnout. Doctors must conquer increased demands for documentation, declining wages while workloads increase, and the quality of life, along with job satisfaction and fulfillment, decline readily.

Burnout, or the state of mental and physical exhaustion coupled with the belief that there is no end in sight, is not singular to the healing arts. Many professional licensees experience burnout because of demands on the professional’s time compounded by performing ancillary tasks associated with their profession. Most professionals will be stressed out or one time in their professional lives.

Few people ever recognize the bureaucratic demands of their chosen profession until they join the ranks. Once young professionals experience bureaucratic requirements, and burnout begins to creep into their minds, the professional starts to feel unappreciated, disillusioned, dispirited, and depressed. These feelings can lead to depression, quitting the profession, and thoughts of committing suicide. To be sure, about 400 doctors take their lives each year. Moreover, well over one-half of all medical professionals participating in a survey admitted that they experienced at least one known symptom of burnout within the previous year.

Malpractice lawsuits and complaints to medical licensing boards significantly increase the stress a medical practitioner experiences. The constant threat of being sued over a mistake requires doctors to increase the amount of documentation they must complete to protect themselves, and more specifically their malpractice insurers. Doctors also complain that patient care is faceless because medical practitioners are held hostage by insurance companies and for-profit medical companies who are exclusively concerned with revenues. Accordingly, medical licensees must devote more time to other matters besides patient care, which was the inspiration to enter the profession in the first place.

Experts say that burnout is the primary cause of medical mistakes. The mistakes doctors, nurses, physician’s assistants, nurse practitioners, and other medical licensees come with a human cost. Patients of burned-out doctors can feel unsafe and lose trust in the practitioner. Patients who advocate for the standard of healthcare they deserve may need to report a physician who is making errors, falling behind, becoming aggravated, displaying a lack of empathy, or committing malpractice.

Hospitals and corporate providers pay lip service to the growing burnout problem. Some facilities try to tackle the problem by imploring their caretakers to forge on and be persistent even in the face of excruciating mental and emotional exhaustion. Other facilities have turned to alternative therapies like yoga to encourage their professionals to relax. The paradox is inescapable: medical facilities are content treating symptoms rather than the underlying cause of the problem. Medical schools and training programs have increased their attention to burnout in their curricula and during internships and residencies. The success of early burnout intervention has not been evaluated. Anecdotally, doctors have said that their time is better spent addressing patient needs or taking a full day away from the office instead of compulsory attendance at a program designed to reduce stress. Compelled attendance only serves to increase tension.

Burnout among medical practitioners cannot be eliminated or even reduced with one tactic. Given the declining number of physicians in practice and the anticipated need for healthcare workers in the future stakeholders must take a holistic approach to repair a broken system so that the healthcare providers can focus on complete care for their patients.

For Help With Your Medical Licensing Issues

Call Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a consultation if you are a medical professional licensee facing discipline attributed to burnout. You can rely on Attorney Sanger’s vast experience to protect you, your profession, your family, and your way of life.

Source: Cited and I have a friend who is a physician in his second intern year at Ohio State University. He told me about compelled attendance at stress reduction conferences and said that all they do is increase stress.

Allegations of Misconduct have Wide-Ranging Consequences

Physicians and other medical licensees who are the subject of misconduct complaints at a hospital may face licensing discipline based on the outcome of the complaint. Physicians must appreciate that their way of life depends on their commitment to acting appropriately in all circumstances, including when practicing medicine under the privileges at a hospital. Even one small and seemingly insignificant misstep could result in disciplinary action from the medical facility and at the licensing board. Therefore, physicians who are under suspicion or investigation for a violation of hospital by-laws must retain a professional licensing attorney.

Danielle Sanger, Esq. is a professional licensing attorney who practices administrative law in Kansas and Missouri. Attorney Sanger is well-versed in the nuances of the laws invoked during disciplinary hearings in both states through her vast experience representing physicians, nurses, and other medical licensees, in addition to representing licensees from a variety of other professions. Attorney Sanger does not dabble in this area of the law. Instead, she dedicated her entire law practice to representing professional licensees facing professional discipline.

Based on her family members’ travails with regulatory boards and boards of professional registration, Attorney Sanger understands all-too-well how people can get lost in the administrative process, which deprives them of their capacity to earn a living, care for their family, or have a career in the profession they selected. Consequently, Attorney Sanger embarked upon her career as a private attorney to help people fight through the administrative law process in Kansas and Missouri.

Hospitals have a legal obligation to prevent immediate harm to their employees. Typically, physicians are not employees of a hospital, with the notable exception of hospitalists.  Concomitant with the duty prevent immediate injury is the hospital’s duty to investigate claims of wrongdoing, such as sexual harassment for example, and then work diligently to prevent future harm to its employees upon learning of the alleged transgression.

The remedial actions taken by the hospital must be limited to remediate the harm. However, corrective actions taken by hospitals can conflict with a physician’s due process rights and rights conveyed under the hospital’s by-laws. A physician suspected of misconduct has a constitutional due process right in his or her medical license as well as the privilege to practice in a hospital before the doctor’s rights, and privileges can be lawfully terminated. Additionally, the federal civil rights act grants physicians a statutory right to relief in court if a hospital interferes with the physician’s rights provided that the hospital is a public medical facility. Also, the U.S. Constitution guarantees that physicians have rights to due process before a public hospital revokes the doctor’s privileges.

The due process rights enjoyed by physicians as license holders guarantees the physician the opportunity for a fair hearing on the allegations, a right to be heard, a right to confront the physician’s accusers and cross-examine them along with the right to present evidence in support of the physician’s case. The due process rights of a physician are not as extensive as a criminal defendant’s rights to a trial by jury, but there is substantial congruency between the two.

Relatedly, there is a conflict between the hospital’s duty to prevent harm when the hospital employs a summary suspension process and the doctor’s rights to be heard in opposition. A summary suspension could lead to the impression that the doctor is not fully competent as a medical professional and irreparably damage the doctor’s right to earn a living. Additionally, a suspension or revocation of hospital privileges will result in an investigation conducted by the Board of Registration of Medicine and which could trigger attempts at disciplinary action.

Contact Attorney Sanger Immediately if You are Threatened with Discipline

Call Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a consultation if you are a physician threatened with losing your privileges to practice in a hospital due to allegations of misconduct to learn about your rights and how Attorney Sanger will fight to protect them.

Addiction Crisis Among Medical Professionals Leads to Licensing Discipline

Stress, anguish, pain, dread, and being overwhelmed may describe how people sometimes feel when working in the medical profession. Of course, those feelings are not limited to the medical profession and are part of life from time to time. However, medical professionals must endure experiences that are unique to their profession, and few people know what it is like to bear the awesome responsibility for saving another person’s life or nursing them back to health. Medical professionals, and physicians, in particular, will endure adverse patient outcomes during the span of one’s career. When compounding adverse results with the strain of running a medical practice, worrying about billing, insurance issues, and a host of other issue attendant with the practice of medicine along with all of life’s unexpected twists and turns, medical professionals can turn to unproductive methods of handling the resulting stress, anxiety, and depression.

Medical professionals, just like the rest of us, experience fatigue and exhaustion, but the demands of their jobs are unrelenting. Physicians and nurses can turn to substances stronger than caffeine to help keep them awake and alert. Patient care cannot yield to the physician’s sleep schedule or whether the doctor herself is a little under the weather. A doctor’s or nurse’s duty of care owed to his or her patients cannot acquiesce to the way a caregiver feels on a given day.

If you are a medical professional suffering from the effects of drug or alcohol misuse, you could face professional discipline, which can jeopardize your career, your family life, and your future. The stress and anxiety could turn you deeper into dependence on addictive substances. You need an advocate, someone who is going help you get through this difficult time. Kansas and Missouri professional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger can you help keep your license and protect you and your family if you are facing professional discipline due to an addiction to drugs or alcohol. When you have Attorney Sanger by your side, you know you have an attorney who has devoted her practice to defending the rights of professional licensees, including physicians, nurses, and other medical professionals who mightily struggle with addictions to drugs and alcohol.

Why Do Medical Professionals Become Addicted?

Paradoxically, medical professionals become addicted to prescription drugs and alcohol with great regularity despite knowing that substance misuse is damaging to their health. Notwithstanding the health risks, medical personal turn to prescription drugs because of the ease of access to medication, especially in hospitals. Fortunately, medical professionals have the education and training to recognize when they need help. Addicted health care providers are often amenable to treatment once they acknowledge that they have a problem. Hopefully, with the right guidance, treatment, and commitment to sobriety, the health care professional can free herself or himself from the potent grasp of addiction.

Seeking Treatment before Facing Disciplinary Hearings Can Minimize Adverse Outcomes

Obtaining treatment for addiction and committing to sobriety before facing professional discipline could help ease the severity of professional punishment. Taking responsibility and decisive action demonstrates to Boards of Medicine and Registration that the medical professional comprehends the seriousness of the problem and evinces the appropriate amount of concern for healing themselves while showing that the medical professional can safely resume treating patients. Every case is different, naturally, however, taking the first steps to sobriety necessarily assists the medical professional personally and professionally.

Urgent help for you when you need it

Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger is available to help you get your career back on track. Your professional is too valuable to allow the clutch of substance abuse to ruin your career and your personal life. Call Attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to learn more about your legal options if you are under investigation for or are facing discipline for substance abuse as a medical professional.

Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Says: Physicians Must Fight to Keep Disciplinary Actions Private

Keeping disciplinary actions from public view can help maintain a physician’s practice even if the doctor is on probation. According to Consumer Reports, 66% of subjects polled across the United States, favor a policy in which a physician on probation for any rules infraction may not treat any patients until the doctor successfully completes probation.  Additionally, 82% of people surveyed believe that state licensing boards should enact rules obligating doctors who are on probation to notify their patients that the treating physician is on probation, for how long, and for what infraction or infractions the licensing authority disciplined the medical practitioner. Given the overwhelming public sentiment on the issue, physicians facing disciplinary action must fight to maintain as much privacy as permitted by law so they can continue to practice medicine while serving a probationary term.

Missouri and Kansas progressional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger understands the difficulties physicians encounter when facing professional discipline. A doctor who is under investigation for a violation of the professional standards must carefully weigh his or her options when contesting or negotiating a resolution so that he or she can obtain the best outcome possible. Attorney Sanger dedicated her law practice to representing professionals such as doctors, nurses, health care professionals, and other professional licensees. Consequently, Attorney Sanger possesses a thorough understanding of the nuances of administrative law in both Kansas and Missouri. A physician who now faces a disciplinary hearing can rely on her expertise to develop a winning legal strategy that protects your medical license so you can continue to earn a living for you and your family while you rectify the alleged problems that bring you before the medical licensing board.

Physicians are human and like the lot of humanity, run into trouble from time to time. Trouble might take the form of a complaint from an employee or patient regarding something very serious like sexual harassment, substance abuse, incorrectly prescribing medication, or criminal charges. The allegations could also be minor in nature as well. Notwithstanding the severity of the claims, a physician should take a complaint very seriously. Although a physician has many valuable rights in Kansas or Missouri disciplinary hearings before their respective boards of medicine, trying to negotiate without counsel or litigating the complaint without counsel could lead to enormous collateral consequences.

Kansas and Missouri medical licensing boards understand the balance that they must strike between public safety and opportunity for the physician to rehabilitate himself or herself. Public reprimands, probationary periods, suspension, and revocation of the doctor’s license to practice are harsh sanctions and are assessed by the licensing boards based on numerous factors including severity of the infraction, the length of time in practice, the severity of the injury if any, the outcome of a criminal prosecution, and the egregiousness of the doctor’s behavior.

When considering the continuum of possible sanctions, public reprimand and probation do not appear to be as harsh on their face as suspension and revocation; however, these sanctions can have unintended collateral consequences. Practicing with either lets the public know that you did something wrong. The specter of wrongdoing can linger over a physician’s practice and cause financial hardship, even if the sanction is a public reprimand. Practicing medicine during a term of probation could have worse effects. The physician could lose his or her partnership in a medical practice depending on the terms of probation or have to limit the time she or he spends practicing, thereby losing patients. Alternatively, having an experienced advocate fight for a private reprimand, convincing the board to dismiss the disciplinary action, or win exoneration after a hearing can help you stay in practice, keep your business afloat, and provide for your family.

Consult Kansas and Missouri Licensing Attorney Danielle Sanger as Soon as Possible

Attorney Danielle Sanger is available to consult with you about your disciplinary action proceeding. Call the Law Offices of Danielle Sanger today at 785-979-4352 to schedule your initial consultation.  Our Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney is ready to help you now!