Changes Within the Medical Board of California That Can Affect You

Written by Sarah Lim, CA Lic# 0M52397

Did You Know… 

…Consumers Can Track Your License Profile?

The Medical Board of California developed an app for Apple iOS devices called License Alert Mobile App that helps consumers stay current with their physician’s license profile.  Up to 16 physicians’ profiles can be tracked with this app and anytime there is a change in the physician’s name, address, practice status, license expiration, or survey data, an alert will be sent to the consumer.  An alert will also be sent to the consumer when there is a disciplinary action or there are enforcement documents are added to the physician’s profile.  So far, the Medical Board of California is the first in the US to use such a method to notify patients about their doctors. 

…The Medical Board Has a Podcast to Educate and Inform You?

The Medical Board of California has launched its first podcast: Medical Board Chat.  The Medical Board of California is now the first licensing board under the Department of Consumer Affairs to reach out to licensees and consumers via podcast.  This podcast will be produced once a month and will cover a wide range of topics that affect both licensees and consumers.  The first two episodes are as follows:

Episode 1 – Medical Board Death Certificate Project

Episode 2 – Medical Board of California Releases Mobile App for Apple iOS Devices

…Opioid Related Patient Deaths Can Be Traced Back to You?

The Medical Board has a project called the Death Certificate Project that has been ongoing to fight the current opioid epidemic.  This project came about from legislation that was previously vetoed.  Under this legislation, any death where the cause of death was due to prescription drug use, coroners in California would have had to report them.  So based on this, the death certificate project uses data in the California death records to go back and see which physician was the one who prescribed the medication.  Those physicians who may have broken the law by inappropriately prescribing medications are being investigated by the Board based on the information brought up by the death certificate project.  The Board however, does acknowledge the fact that just because a patient died, it does not automatically mean that the physician did not provide the required standard of care. 

…You Have to Consult CURES to Provide a Controlled Substance for the First Time to Any Patient?

The use of CURES (Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System) is a new mandatory requirement that became effective October 2, 2018.  This database keeps track of all Schedule II, III, and IV controlled substances prescriptions distributed in the state of California.  Those licensed healthcare providers who prescribe medications that would fall under the Schedule II-IV category are required to consult CURES within 24 hours of prescribing, ordering, administering, or providing these medications for the first time to any patient.  If the prescribed controlled substance continues to be a part of the patient’s treatment, the provider must also consult CURES at least once every 4 months following the initial prescription.  CURES is maintained by the Department of Justice (DOJ) but is also used by State public health, and law enforcement agencies. 

 Changes Within the Medical Board of California That Can Affect You…

…Requirement for Postgraduate Training

Effective January 1, 2020, all physician applicants, regardless of which medical school they attended, will have to complete three years of Board-approved postgraduate training.  For those residents who participate in a California approved postgraduate training program will receive a postgraduate training license created by this new law.