Pennsylvania License Defense Blog

Actress indicted on felony drug charges

Actress, Rose McGowan, is a popular figure for fans of the show "Charmed" and an advocate for women's rights in the prominent #MeToo movement. However, readers of this Philadelphia legal blog may have recently seen her name in the news due to serious criminal allegations that have been lodged against her: cocaine possession.

McGowan was flying on United Airlines to Washington Dulles Airport in Virginia when she left behind a piece of luggage. That piece of luggage was taken off of McGowan's flight and alleged searched. That search turned up what authorities claim was "trace" amounts of cocaine.

Do you know the scope of your nursing practice?

Every state has its own Board of Nursing (BON) that establishes laws regarding nursing practices and education. Even if you are licensed to practice in Pennsylvania, your nursing duties are limited to a particular scope of practice. Acting outside of this scope of practice can result in serious penalties.

Opioids lead to Pennsylvania doctor’s license suspension

As the opioid epidemic continues to garner national attention, authorities are taking heightened actions against doctors they deem to be at fault. Medical professionals who operate “pill mills”—practices that dispense or prescribe narcotics inappropriately—can face steep repercussions. The revocation of one’s license, heavy fines and jail time are all on the table for those that investigators find to be working illegally.

One such doctor in Northumberland County has been issued an indictment from a grand jury for running an alleged pill mill. The 60-year-old physician faces 19 criminal charges for illegally prescribing drugs. The indictment claims that the man has been wrongfully dispensing narcotics since at least 2005. Authorities allege that between January of 2016 and July of 2017 alone the man prescribed 2.7 million pills of Oxycodone, Hydrocodone and Fentanyl to less than 3,000 patients, making him the largest single prescriber of those drugs in the state of Pennsylvania.

Is a pharmacist professional license at risk if I receive a DUI?

When a person makes the mistake of driving after they have been drinking, they sometimes get caught. Philadelphia law enforcement aggressively prosecute those who have received a DUI. But, for some who hold professional licenses, like pharmacists and other medical professionals, their career may be on the line.

Those who hold a professional license have spent years and thousands of dollars on their education. It is important for these professionals to hold on to their license. If a person is facing a felony DUI, they can have their license revoked. Even if they aren't facing a felony, they can still have their license revoked or suspended.

Medical Marijuana and New Reporting Requirements for Medical Practitioners

Medical marijuana has the potential to create huge licensing issues for physicians and all other health care practitioners.  On May 17, 2018 what was a temporary regulation became a final annual regulation that targets medical doctors for discipline. Identified at 28 PA. Code § 1181.25, any physician identified in the Medical Marijuana Practitioner Registry will now be subject Department of Health annual reviews. Mandatory Arrest Reporting Responsibility The review will seek to determine if the physician's license is inactive, expired, suspended, revoked, limited or otherwise restricted by the applicable medical board, or if the physician has been subject to professional disciplinary action.  This insures that every medical marijuanna "Medical Practitioner" must report to the Medical Board and the Department of Health both upon arrest and annually, any arrests and/or pending disciplinary action.

Pennsylvania doctor’s license revoked after federal conviction

The State Board of Medicine recently announced disciplinary actions against a number of people in the medical profession here in Pennsylvania. The Board regulates not only medical doctors, but also physician assistants, radiology technicians, respiratory therapists and others.

Among those disciplined recently were a doctor in Philadelphia County and a Blair County physician whose medical license was revoked based on “his numerous felony convictions,” the Board noted in a statement.

Another Appeals Court Reverses a Pennsylvania Licensing Board Disciplinary Decision

In April 2018 a Pennsylvania appellate court issued a decision in Abruzzese v BPOA, --- A.3d --- (2018). This case is one of three Spring 2018 cases reversing a Pennsylvania licensing board arbitrary disciplinary decision. I've written about the other two cases,  .

Criminal Conduct and Pennsylvania's Licensing Board Disciplinary Review

I routinely write about the overbearing criminal conduct and disciplinary environment that currently exists for Pennsylvania licensees. On May 10, 2018 Commonwealth Court decided Levengood v. BPOA. This cases involves a car salesperson's license and the excessive discipline this Board handed down. In this case, along with several other recent Commonwealth Court decision, the court rejects as excessive and manafestly unreasonable discipline that goes too far - such as revoking licenses and imposing civil penalties - when the facts do not warrant it.

Nurse Statements to Employer -- Basis for Manslaughter Charges

Headline reads "Nurse to be Criminally Charged with 3rd Degree Manslaughter." This byline characterizes the extreme enforcement environment in which all medical practitioners are currently practicing.

The danger of license inactivation documents

Occasionally, medical professionals receive what’s called a voluntary license inactive document. This is a form sent out by the Professional Health Monitoring Program (PHMP) when the program claims you are suspected of substance addiction.

The document has “voluntary” in its name for a reason. You are not required to sign it. So what is this document and what do you need to know about it?

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