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Disciplinary investigations, actions, and orders sought and issued against physicians by the Texas Medical Board (TMB) have increased dramatically over the last few years. While standard-of-care complaints comprise approximately one-half of all investigations, chemical dependency, sexual boundary violations, non-therapeutic prescribing, the failure to maintain adequate charts and records, and the commission and conviction of crimes also account for a significant number of misconduct investigations and disciplinary proceedings against a medical license and physician registration / license. Punitive sanctions have risen as have the number of cases being settled with lengthy disciplinary orders and probated suspensions.
Investigations are often initiated by a letter and followed with a phone call from an investigator. If the Texas Medical Board (TMB) contacts a physician in this or any other manner, it is prudent for the doctor to consult with an attorney before responding to the TMB. It is never advisable to meet with or be questioned by a Texas Medical Board investigator without legal counsel. In fact, once counsel is retained, the TMB’s investigators are prohibited from contacting and questioning a physician directly.