10.32.02.02

.02 Definitions.

A. In this chapter, the following terms have the meanings indicated.

B. Terms Defined.

(1) “Administrative law judge (ALJ)” means a hearing officer delegated the duty of conducting evidentiary hearings for the Board.

(2) “Administrative Procedure Act” means State Government Article, Title 10, Subtitle 2, Annotated Code of Maryland.

(3) “Administrative prosecutor” means the attorney assigned from the Office of the Attorney General to prosecute administrative charges.

(4) Administrative Reinstatement.

(a) “Administrative reinstatement” means the reactivation of an inactive or expired license.

(b) “Administrative reinstatement” does not include postdisciplinary reinstatement.

(5) “Advisory letter” means a nonpublic letter issued by the Board which informs, educates, or admonishes an individual licensed or certified by the Board in regard to the practice of medicine or an allied health profession.

(6) “Applicant” means an individual who has submitted to the Board an application for initial licensure or for administrative or postdisciplinary reinstatement.

(7) “Board” means the Maryland State Board of Physicians.

(8) “Board counsel” means the attorney assigned from the Office of the Attorney General for the purpose of advice on legal matters before the Board.

(9) “Cease and desist order” means an order of the Board prohibiting an individual from practicing medicine without a license.

(10) “Charging document” means a document issued by the Board which sets forth charges or an intent to deny an application for initial licensure or for administrative reinstatement on grounds authorized by the Medical Practice Act or other statute granting the Board disciplinary authority.

(11) Complaint.

(a) “Complaint” means an allegation or report that:

(i) A health care provider has committed a prohibited act for which the Board can take disciplinary action, impose a fine, or deny licensure; or

(ii) An individual is practicing medicine without a license.

(b) “Complaint” includes, but is not limited to, the following:

(i) Issuance of a certificate of merit in a malpractice claim;

(ii) A report from a hospital or related institution, or an alternative health system, pursuant to Health Occupations Article, §14-413 or 14-414, Annotated Code of Maryland;

(iii) A law enforcement report;

(iv) A report from another country, state, or jurisdiction or the armed services of the United States;

(v) A malpractice insurance report;

(vi) A report from another federal or state agency or court in any country, state, or jurisdiction;

(vii) Consumer complaints;

(viii) Media publications;

(ix) Statements on applications for licensure, renewal, or reinstatement; and

(x) Other information, from whatever source, which warrants investigation.

(12) “Contested case” has the meaning stated in State Government Article, §10-202(d), Annotated Code of Maryland.

(13) “Disciplinary Committee for Case Resolution (DCCR)” means a committee composed of a minimum of 3 Board members who make recommendations to the Board for proposed disposition of matters prior to a hearing.

(14) “Disposition agreement” means a formal nonpublic agreement by which the health care provider agrees to comply with certain conditions and the Board stays further investigation or forgoes further action on a matter based on compliance with those conditions.

(15) “Final order” means:

(a) The final written decision of the Board which results from a contested case proceeding or other formal proceeding and which contains findings of fact, conclusions of law, and a disposition which:

(i) Denies a license;

(ii) Sanctions by reprimand, probation, fine, consent order, suspension, or revocation;

(iii) Dismisses charges;

(iv) Accepts a surrender of a license; or

(v) Denies administrative reinstatement of a license;

(b) An order that denies postdisciplinary reinstatement of a license; or

(c) An order to cease and desist from the practice of medicine.

(16) “Fine” means a monetary penalty.

(17) “Imperatively requires” means that an action shall be undertaken pursuant to State Government Article, §10-226(c)(2), Annotated Code of Maryland, as a result of factual contentions which raise a substantial likelihood of risk of serious harm to the public health, safety, or welfare before an evidentiary hearing governed by the Administrative Procedure Act is likely to be completed and result in a final order.

(18) Investigation.

(a) “Investigation” means the gathering of the information necessary for the Board to determine one or more of the following:

(i) Whether there is reasonable cause to charge the respondent with a violation of the Medical Practice Act or another statute which gives the Board disciplinary authority;

(ii) Whether an applicant is eligible for licensure or administrative reinstatement;

(iii) The facts necessary for the Board to issue a declaratory ruling; or

(iv) Whether an individual has complied with any Board order.

(b) “Investigation” includes:

(i) A preliminary investigation; and

(ii) A full investigation.

(19) “Investigative Review Panel (IRP)” means a disciplinary subcommittee composed of Board members, advised by staff, Board counsel, and others, which is designated by the Board to:

(a) Review complaints;

(b) Recommend for full investigation or closure; and

(c) Make recommendations as to action on cases under investigation.

(20) “Involved medical specialty” means the area of medical specialty whose practitioners, in the Board’s opinion:

(a) Treat the medical or surgical ailment, symptom, or problem in question; and

(b) Would likely be familiar with the risks and benefits of treatments provided for that ailment, symptom, or problem.

(21) Licensure.

(a) “Licensure” means permission to engage in a health care profession regulated by the Board.

(b) “Licensure” includes certification and registration.

(22) “Medical Practice Act” means Health Occupations Article, §§14-101—14-702, Annotated Code of Maryland.

(23) “Peer review” means an evaluation by a physician or physicians with special qualifications to judge the matter at hand, based on professional involvement within the involved medical specialty or specialties, of an act or acts of medical or surgical care, or other acts connected with medical practice, by an applicant or licensee.

(24) “Postdeprivation hearing” means a Board hearing scheduled after the Board has issued an order for summary suspension pursuant to State Government Article, §10-226(c)(2), Annotated Code of Maryland, and at which the respondent has the opportunity to explain why the Board should rescind the order of summary suspension.

(25) “Postdisciplinary reinstatement” means:

(a) The reactivation of a revoked or suspended license; or

(b) The reactivation of a license surrendered while the licensee was under investigation or subject to disciplinary charges.

(26) “Predeprivation hearing” means a Board hearing at which the respondent has the opportunity to explain why the Board should not issue an order for summary suspension pursuant to State Government Article, §10-226(c)(2), Annotated Code of Maryland.

(27) “Preliminary investigation” means the gathering of the information necessary for the Board to determine whether it should dismiss a complaint, or conduct further investigation to determine reasonable cause to charge the respondent with a violation of the Medical Practice Act or another statute which gives the Board disciplinary authority or to find an applicant ineligible for licensure or simple reinstatement and begins with the receipt of a complaint.

(28) “Prohibited act” means any conduct for which the Board can issue a sanction.

(29) “Proposed decision” means the proposed findings of fact and, where required by the delegation order from the Board, the proposed conclusions of law and proposed disposition issued by the administrative law judge.

(30) “Recusal” means disqualification by a Board member from participating in a proceeding because of a legal interest or prejudice in the case before the Board.

(31) “Reinstatement inquiry panel” means a committee of Board members who may meet informally and confidentially with applicants for postdisciplinary reinstatement and make recommendations to the Board.

(32) “Respondent” means an individual who has been:

(a) Given notice to answer allegations concerning violations of a statute over which the Board has jurisdiction;

(b) Notified as to a potential summary suspension pursuant to State Government Article, §10-226(c), Annotated Code of Maryland;

(c) Given notice to answer allegations concerning violations of a Board order; or

(d) Given notice that the Board is investigating good moral character or the commission of an act that could be the subject of discipline if committed by a licensee, in relation to an application for licensure.

(33) “Revocation” means the removal of a health care provider’s license to practice a health occupation.

(34) “Sanction” means an action by the Board which:

(a) Reprimands;

(b) Places on probation;

(c) Fines;

(d) Suspends or revokes a license;

(e) Disciplines by a consent order; or

(f) Accepts a letter of surrender in lieu of charges or further investigation or prosecution.

(35) “Sanctioning guidelines” means guidelines, adopted by the Board and set out in Regulation .11 of this chapter, indicating the minimum and maximum penalty associated with each ground for discipline and mitigating or aggravating circumstances which could result in imposition of a penalty below the minimum or above the maximum.

(36) “Show cause” means a demand by letter or order issued by the Board, which directs the respondent to:

(a) Respond either in writing or by an appearance before the Board; and

(b) Present reasons and argument why a particular order should not be entered.

(37) “Special qualifications to judge the matter at hand” means those credentials which qualify a peer reviewer as a member of the involved medical specialty in a particular case.

(38) “Stay” means the withholding of Board action against a health care provider.

(39) “Stet” means the act of staying further action in a proceeding, subject to the proceeding being reopened at a later date.

(40) “Summary suspension” means a denial for an indefinite period of the right to use a license.

(41) “Surrender” means the voluntary relinquishing of a license to the Board by a health care provider.

(42) “Suspension” means a denial of the right to use a license.