Last week I resolved three cases involving pleas of guilty or no contest to drug / alcohol related offenses and the subsequent investigations and prosecutions by the individual Client’s respective State licensing Board(s):
- The Texas Optometry Board
- The Texas State Board of Pharmacy
- The Texas Medical Board
In each case, although the Board did not have jurisdiction to discipline for the criminal status in-and-of-itself, each agency found a way to link the conduct (the actions behind the commission of the criminal offense) to the Client’s occupational practice and attempt to resolve the matter through a reasonable agreed order.
Neither the Texas Pharmacy Act nor the Texas Optometry Act afforded jurisdiction to the agency to discipline the license holder for the court ordered felony deferred adjudication probation(s). However, public scrutiny being what it is, each Board simply stated that the conduct was egregious and unbecoming of a licensee. Moreover, the Board’s mission was to protect the public and each agency felt this was something the public should know about.