CHAPTER 144

FORMERLY

SENATE BILL NO. 203

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 17, TITLE 24 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE BOARD OF MEDICAL PRACTICE.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

Section 1. Amend Chapter 17, Title 24 of the Delaware Code by adding a new §1731 B, which new Section shall read as follows:

"§1731B Counseling,

(a) If the Executive Director and the President of the Board determine after the Investigation that there has been a violation of this Chapter or regulations enacted pursuant to this Chapter, but that such violation does not warrant a formal disciplinary action under §1734 of this Chapter, the Executive Director and the President may decide to counsel the physician regarding the violation. The Executive Director shall notify the physician of his or her findings and of the decision not to proceed by formal disciplinary action. Such notification shall explain the findings of the Executive Director and shall request the presence of the physician at a counseling session. During the counseling session the Executive Director or President shall discuss the violation with the physician as well as any necessary plans of correction.

(b) Attendance at a counseling session shall be voluntary; but, if the physician fails to be counseled or fails to take the corrective action specified by the Executive Director and President, the Executive Director's notification letter shall be conclusive evidence that such violation occurred and may be used in a subsequent hearing regarding the physician unless challenged by the physician. In the event any physician challenges the findings of the Executive Director, such physician shall be entitled to a hearing in accordance with §1734 of this Chapter as to whether such violations occurred. In the event the physician requests a hearing, the hearing shall be conducted as a disciplinary hearing under §1734 of this Chapter.

(c) The counseling under this Section shall not be considered disciplinary action; and, provided the physician attends and complies with any corrective action required by the Executive Director, the fact of such counseling shall not be considered disciplinary action nor may it be used in considering disciplinary sanctions In any future hearing unrelated to the incident for which the physician is counseled unless such future incident involves the same or similar allegation(s) as that for which the physician was counseled hereunder."

Approved July 6, 1995