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Employment After a License Suspension

If you’re reading this, you likely had some medical board investigation turn sour. Maybe you are on probation or had a license suspension or license termination. It’s not the end of the world; here is how you move forward. You are looking for employment after a license suspension which is not easy. But I have some suggestions.

The most important thing I can say is that as a trained medical professional, you have actual skills, not just a medical license. What makes you great is what got you to in front of the patient, don’t let a probation or license suspension take that confidence away.

Finding employment After a License Suspension

My name is Mohammad Ashori, MD and I had a medical board investigation in 2017 likely because I didn’t cooperate with the investigator in Oregon. For this, my career suffered a 30-day medical license suspension.

Emotionally this was a terrible blow. I loved medicine prior to this and had found the perfect work opportunities.

Fortunately, I didn’t stop earning money because I had built multiple income streams. However, I wasn’t allowed to practice medicine for those 30 days and was even barred from doing medical volunteer work.

For a few years after that, it was nearly impossible to find any employment after the suspension. But that’s because I didn’t know any better.

The ultimate goal is to show that you can hold down a job after your medical board investigation – that’s how you secure future employment after a license suspension. After a few of these “private” jobs, you can apply to a larger medical group with a full credentialing department.

Working for Private Clinics

You see a small private clinic in your downtown or see a list on Google Maps of private clinics in your specialty. A solo private physician owns and operates that clinic, and perhaps they are looking for an associate.

They are not on the medical board’s radar. They simply want to ensure a good income and serve their patients. Assuming you are a decent human being – despite your medical board investigation – you can apply and land a job there. Many others have found such employment while on probation.

Build your narrative; learn how to communicate your story to employers. Work on showing on your resume that you are a standup clinician and willing to be a team player.

You’ll call these clinics and apply and perhaps even put in some effort to convince them to hire you. Maybe you’ll take a pay cut or perhaps you’ll get a solid pay.

Working in Urgent Care Clinics

Urgent care clinics are wondergful. The work is easy, and the patients are happy. If you haven’t done it in a while, it does have a learning curve, but it isn’t hard.

Because of the high clinician turnover such settings are ideal for employment after a license suspension because their goal is to provide good care to patients.

Contact the medical group and give them your narrative. Remember, the narrative is critical. If you can’t convince another physician as to what happened with your investigation, you won’t convince a credentialing board later on.

Local Emergency Room

Many ERs are popping up, which are standalone ERs and private. These can save patients a lot of money.

Because they aren’t hospital affiliated, you likely could find a job as a fast-track physician for simple cases. Think, coughs and colds, lacerations, and UTIs.

Primary Care Clinics

There are tons of small private primary care clinics all over your town. And if they aren’t part of a large medical group, they likely won’t do extensive credentialing.

Again, it’s all about the narrative. You have to show them that you will care for patients and have your act together.

A lot of these clinics cater to underserved patients. They might be in less desirable areas, and the pay might not be what you expect. But it’s an incredible opportunity for your to rebuild your resume.

Remote Area Clinics

Think FQHCs or other remote area clinics. These are clinical sites that help patients of lower socioeconomic means. In fact, there are incredible such networks all over the US.

I like these organizations because their goal is to provide good care to their patients. They know that they aren’t going to get the cream of the crop physicians, but they want people who will work hard for their patients.

Volunteer Clinical Work

If you cannot land a job, no matter what, then look for clinical volunteer positions. A group like RAM can be a great place to start. If you’re a physician with an active license, you can help out.

And if your license isn’t active, you already know that you must put in some community hours to get it back.

Private Telemedicine Group

Many smaller physician groups or even private medical practices are getting in on the telemedicine game. They need physicians who are flexible with timing and technology.

You may not get a lot of hours with a group like this, but you can bring your expertise and help grow their virtual practice. They likely would let you see their patients despite your medical board investigation history.

Sometimes there are practices out there that are considering this and you wouldn’t know about it unless you reach out and ask. It’s a lot of legwork, yes, but you’re in a tough position and it’s worth the effort.

Friend’s Practice

Do you have any medical school or residency friends who have their own practice? Can they offer you a job there as a physician supervisor?

Maybe they aren’t comfortable with you seeing patients, but they want to help you “reform” yourself. Anything can help.

Start Your Own Private Practice

Finally, you tried everything, and nobody will hire you. Would you hire you? Great, you got a job!

You can be a sole proprietor and start your own private practice. You’ll be your own employee. You pay yourself a salary, and with enough time passing, you’ll hopefully be able to apply for a position elsewhere.

Of course, you might love what you’re doing at your own practice and never stop. That’s the whole unexpected thing of the medical board investigation journey – sometimes something great comes of it.

Nonclinical Employment Options While on Probation

Some of you may not be allowed to have any clinical interactions with the public. I realize this is painful; many of you will have to wrangle this emotionally.

If possible, the other part of you needs to plow forward and think about what kind of value you can offer others. What would another human being or entity be willing to pay you for the value you offer them?

Health Coaching is something I’ve discussed at length. Is that an option for you?

Health Informatics may not sound sexy, but it’s good work, and you impact the lives of many. Other administrative work in healthcare organizations can also be a good fit for some physicians dealing with employment problems after license suspensions or terminations.

7 replies on “Employment After a License Suspension”

Medical boards are highly biased and unjust process that violate freedom of legal due process . It is not a just judiciary system as administration law is not about truth or facts but about public image no matter if a physician is wronged once you are judged as a bad doctor . The board becomes judge Jury and executioner.

Sadly, that is the case. We, as physicians and patients, and citizens of our state, have agreed to allow the state medical board to have complete unilateral decision making when it comes to physician licensure. On one hand it makes sense because it makes the process less burdensome. But on the other hand it puts the power in the hand of a few people. It seems like it would make sense to have more input from the physician community as a whole since it’s easy these days to get a democratic opinion with the power of social media.

I am going through state board complaint now. My ex-coworker filed a totally bogus complaint, and now I am dealing with significant cost and stress. What would you recommend for work now, as I am having to report this to my locums agents, and they want pristine candidates.

It would depend on the type of complaint and the action being taken. There are plenty of private medical groups that will work with you as long as they don’t believe you are a risk to patients. And also the Indian Health Services often will overlook something that is obviously ridiculous.

Will no one stand up for doctors? The AMA maybe? It seems that state medical boards are becoming increasingly powerful to the point that if they feel slighted, they will ruin you. I think they should not be able to punish a physician unless harm was proven, yet more and more cases involve non harm to the public and patients. It’s bullying at it’s finest, made even worse by a society that encourages “speaking to your manager” or “reporting you” for every little thing. They think these actions are a slap on the wrist, but they don’t realize that a suspension is a permanent, very public mark on a physicians record that affects their ability to work and get credentialed for the rest of their career.

There should be some oversight of medical boards as board actions have been on the rise and if it keeps going like this everyone will have a record

The NBPAS has done a fantastic job of this and I am standing up for doctors by showing them ways of earning an income while still helping patients without needing to use their medical license. In some ways, quite a few state medical boards are recognizing the undue pressure they are putting on their physicians and they are becoming more lax despite the higher number of medical board complaints.
I agree that without the proof of harm a punishment should not be allowed – in fact, it’s the only logical way forward.
I don’t foresee oversight over state medical boards but I do see more physicians becoming savvy and protecting themselves through some defensive actions which will harm patient care. More and more medical students and residents reach out to me and ask about my medical board issues and they view it as opportunities to change their practice style to prevent any potential negative action.

My medical license has recently been put on probation due to noncompliance with a PHP. I have been told by my attorney that it’s very hard to get credentialed with insurance companies (including Medicare and Medicaid) while on probation- does anyone have any experience with this or know of insurances that are more likely to work with you while on probation? You mentioned IHS – do they accept physicians on probation? and Urgent Care clinics, I believe the majority of patients served are insured, so is there a way around that in terms of not being a credentialed provider with the insurance companies limiting the patients you can treat? Would love to know any specific organizations others have had successful employment with while on probation. Thanks!

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