A critical component for physicians, dentists, nurses, respiratory therapists and other healthcare practitioners is obtaining and keeping active in good standing your professional license to practice. In Georgia, the Georgia Composite Medical Board (“GCMB”) is the state licensing board which determines whether a license application of a physician, physician assistant, respiratory care professional, perfusionist, acupuncturists, orthotist, prosthetist, auricular detoxification specialist, resident trainee, cosmetic laser practitioner, pain management clinic and medical geneticist is granted and in good standing. The GCMB also is authorized to investigate and impose discipline as to practitioners who may be failing to comply with professional, ethical or other licensure standards. The Georgia Board of Dentistry and Georgia Board of Nursing serve similar roles for practitioners in those areas of healthcare.
One important part of applying for a professional license with a licensing board is completing and submitting timely and accurate documentation to support the application. Another is being prepared to impress the board at a personal interview in support of your license application. Here are some sound practices to remember when preparing for and participating in a board interview:
- Identify any circumstances in your background that may be concerning as the board members consider your application. Be ready to explain what happened and how you learned from mistakes. If you made a mistake in practice, be prepared to disclose what you did wrong, and share lessons learned from the experience and steps you have taken to avoid repeating a mistake. For example, if you had an incident of malpractice in your background, did you complete remedial training to improve your skills and avoid a similar outcome in the future? If you were placed on probation by a licensing body in the past, be prepared to describe the efforts you made to comply with the conditions of probation and return to good standing.
- At all times during the interview:
- Show a positive attitude as you explain your background and qualifications to practice. If asked about a problem in your background, be upbeat as you describe how your learned from a challenge. Don’t be defensive or argumentative if asked about a sensitive subject.
- Own your mistakes (For example, be ready to say: “I made a mistake” and describe how you have improved).
- Be truly responsive to board member questions. When a Board member asks a question, he/she is signaling what matters to the Board. Respond to that specific concern. Don’t veer off track or offer information irrelevant to the question. Ask after responding if you have answered the question satisfactorily.
- Don’t sugar coat or exaggerate a bad outcome.
- Be completely honest and transparent.
- Look board members in the eye when you speak to them. As many board interviews are being held remotely now, try to schedule a video conference if possible as an option to an audio call so that you can engage personally as you discuss your application with the board.
- Dress for success during the interview. Wear business attire suitable to your profession to show you understand and respect the importance of the matter.
- Express a willingness to remediate or improve your skills or education (if applicable). For example, be willing to complete additional training or continuing education, receive proctoring or mentoring by another professional in your field to improve the quality of your clinical care.
Whatever your needs are in your medical, dental, nursing or other healthcare practice, it is advisable to consult with a Georgia attorney and other service professionals who are experienced in the healthcare industry.
Our Georgia and South Carolina healthcare law firm represents and advises healthcare systems, hospitals, physician provider groups, medical practices and individual healthcare providers concerning federal, state and local legal, compliance, licensure and regulatory matters. If you have questions about this post, contact us at (404) 685-1662 (Atlanta) or (706) 722-7886 (Augusta), or by email, firstname.lastname@example.org. You may learn more about our law firm by visiting www.hamillittle.com.
*Disclaimer: Thoughts shared here do not constitute legal advice.