The Maryland regulation of physicians is explained under Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. §§ 14-301 through 14-321. Pursuant to the statutes, except as otherwise provided in this title or § 13-516 of the Education Article, an individual shall be licensed by the Board before the individual may practice medicine in this State[i]. Subject to the rules, regulations, and orders of the Board, the following individuals may practice medicine without a license:
(1) A medical student or an individual in a postgraduate medical training program that is approved by the Board, while doing the assigned duties at any office of a licensed physician, hospital, clinic, or similar facility;
(2) A physician licensed by and residing in another jurisdiction, while engaging in consultation with a physician licensed in this State;
(3) A physician employed in the service of the federal government while performing the duties incident to that employment;
(4) A physician who resides in and is authorized to practice medicine by any state adjoining this State and whose practice extends into this State, if:
(i) The physician does not have an office or other regularly appointed place in this State to meet patients; and
(ii) The same privileges are extended to licensed physicians of this State by the adjoining state; and
(5) An individual while under the supervision of a licensed physician who has specialty training in psychiatry, and whose specialty training in psychiatry has been approved by the Board, if the individual submits an application to the Board on or before October 1, 1993, and either:
(i) 1. Has a master’s degree from an accredited college or university; and
2. Has completed a graduate program accepted by the Board in a behavioral science that includes 1,000 hours of supervised clinical psychotherapy experience; or
(ii) 1. Has a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university; and
2. Has 4,000 hours of supervised clinical experience that is approved by the Board[ii].
To the extent permitted by the rules, regulations, and orders of the Board, an individual to whom duties are delegated by a licensed physician may perform those duties without a license as provided in this section. The individuals to whom duties may be delegated under this section include any individual authorized to practice any other health occupation regulated under this article or § 13-516 of the Education Article. The Board shall adopt rules and regulations to delineate the scope of this section. Before it adopts any rule or regulation under this section, the Board shall invite and consider proposals from any individual or health group that could be affected by the rule or regulation.
If a duty that is to be delegated under this section is a part of the practice of a health occupation that is regulated under this article by another board, any rule or regulation concerning that duty shall be adopted jointly by the Board of Physicians and the board that regulates the other health occupation. If the two boards cannot agree on a proposed rule or regulation, the proposal shall be submitted to the Secretary for a final decision[iii].
To qualify for a license, an applicant shall be an individual who meets the requirements of this section such as:
- The applicant shall be of good moral character.
- The applicant shall be at least 18 years old.
- Except as provided in § 14-308 of this subtitle, the applicant shall:
(1) (i) Have a degree of doctor of medicine from a medical school that is accredited by an accrediting organization that the Board recognizes in its regulations; and
(ii) Submit evidence acceptable to the Board of successful completion of 1 year of training in a postgraduate medical training program that is accredited by an accrediting organization that the Board recognizes in its regulations; or
(2) (i) Have a degree of doctor of osteopathy from a school of osteopathy in the United States, its territories or possessions, Puerto Rico, or Canada that has standards for graduation equivalent to those established by the American Osteopathic Association; and
(ii) Submit evidence acceptable to the Board of successful completion of 1 year of training in a postgraduate medical training program accredited by an accrediting organization that the Board recognizes in its regulations.
- Except as otherwise provided in this title, the applicant shall pass an examination required by the Board under this subtitle.
- The applicant shall meet any other qualifications that the Board establishes in its regulations for license applicants.
- An applicant who has failed the examination or any part of the examination 3 or more times shall submit evidence of having completed 1 year of additional clinical training in an approved postgraduate training program following the latest failure.
- The Board shall require as part of its examination or licensing procedures that an applicant for a license to practice medicine demonstrate an oral competency in the English language[iv].
Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-309 provides that to apply for a license, an applicant shall:
(1) Submit an application to the Board on the form that the Board requires; and
(2) Pay to the Board the application fee set by the Board.
The Board shall provide for the term and renewal of licenses under this section. The term of a license may not be more than 3 years. A license expires at the end of its term, unless the license is renewed for a term as provided by the Board. At least 1 month before the license expires, the Board shall send to the licensee, by first-class mail to the last known address of the licensee:
(1) A renewal notice that states:
(i) The date on which the current license expires;
(ii) The date by which the renewal application must be received by the Board for the renewal to be issued and mailed before the license expires; and
(iii) The amount of the renewal fee; and
(2) A blank panel data sheet supplied by the Health Care Alternative Dispute Resolution Office.
Before the license expires, the licensee periodically may renew it for an additional term, if the licensee:
(1) Otherwise is entitled to be licensed;
(2) Pays to the Board a renewal fee set by the Board; and
(3) Submits to the Board:
(i) A renewal application on the form that the Board requires; and
(ii) Satisfactory evidence of compliance with any continuing education requirements set under this section for license renewal.
In addition to any other qualifications and requirements established by the Board, the Board may establish continuing education requirements as a condition to the renewal of licenses under this section. In establishing these requirements, the Board shall evaluate existing methods, devices, and programs in use among the various medical specialties and other recognized medical groups. The Board may not establish or enforce these requirements if they would so reduce the number of physicians in a community as to jeopardize the availability of adequate medical care in that community. The Board may impose a civil penalty of up to $ 100 per continuing medical education credit in lieu of a sanction under § 14-404 of this title, for a first offense, for the failure of a licensee to obtain the continuing medical education credits required by the Board. The Board shall renew the license of each licensee who meets the requirements of this section. Each licensee shall notify the secretary of the Board in writing of any change in the licensee’s name or address within 60 days after the change[v].
Pursuant to Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-403, the Board shall reinstate the license of a physician who has failed to renew the license for any reason if the physician:
(1) Meets the renewal requirements of § 14-316 of this subtitle;
(2) Pays to the Board a reinstatement fee set by the Board; and
(3) Submits to the Board satisfactory evidence of compliance with the qualifications and requirements established under this title for license reinstatements[vi].
Unless the Board agrees to accept the surrender of a license, certification, or registration of an individual the Board regulates, the individual may not surrender the license, certification, or registration nor may the license, certification, or registration lapse by operation of law while the individual is under investigation or while charges are pending. The Board may set conditions on its agreement to accept surrender of a license, certification, or registration. Subject to the hearing provisions of § 14-405 of this subtitle, the Board, on the affirmative vote of a majority of the quorum, may reprimand any licensee, place any licensee on probation, or suspend or revoke a license if the licensee:
(1) Fraudulently or deceptively obtains or attempts to obtain a license for the applicant or licensee or for another;
(2) Fraudulently or deceptively uses a license;
(3) Is guilty of:
(i) Immoral conduct in the practice of medicine; or
(ii) Unprofessional conduct in the practice of medicine;
(4) Is professionally, physically, or mentally incompetent;
(5) Solicits or advertises in violation of § 14-503 of this title;
(6) Abandons a patient;
(7) Habitually is intoxicated;
(8) Is addicted to, or habitually abuses, any narcotic or controlled dangerous substance as defined in § 5-101 of the Criminal Law Article;
(9) Provides professional services:
(i) While under the influence of alcohol; or
(ii) While using any narcotic or controlled dangerous substance, as defined in § 5-101 of the Criminal Law Article, or other drug that is in excess of therapeutic amounts or without valid medical indication;
(10) Promotes the sale of drugs, devices, appliances, or goods to a patient so as to exploit the patient for financial gain;
(11) Willfully makes or files a false report or record in the practice of medicine;
(12) Willfully fails to file or record any medical report as required under law, willfully impedes or obstructs the filing or recording of the report, or induces another to fail to file or record the report;
(13) On proper request, and in accordance with the provisions of Title 4, Subtitle 3 of the Health – General Article, fails to provide details of a patient’s medical record to the patient, another physician, or hospital;
(14) Solicits professional patronage through an agent or other person or profits from the acts of a person who is represented as an agent of the physician;
(15) Pays or agrees to pay any sum to any person for bringing or referring a patient or accepts or agrees to accept any sum from any person for bringing or referring a patient;
(16) Agrees with a clinical or bioanalytical laboratory to make payments to the laboratory for a test or test series for a patient, unless the licensed physician discloses on the bill to the patient or third-party payor:
(i) The name of the laboratory;
(ii) The amount paid to the laboratory for the test or test series; and
(iii) The amount of procurement or processing charge of the licensed physician, if any, for each specimen taken;
(17) Makes a willful misrepresentation in treatment;
(18) Practices medicine with an unauthorized person or aids an unauthorized person in the practice of medicine;
(19) Grossly overutilizes health care services;
(20) Offers, undertakes, or agrees to cure or treat disease by a secret method, treatment, or medicine;
(21) Is disciplined by a licensing or disciplinary authority or convicted or disciplined by a court of any state or country or disciplined by any branch of the United States uniformed services or the Veterans’ Administration for an act that would be grounds for disciplinary action under this section;
(22) Fails to meet appropriate standards as determined by appropriate peer review for the delivery of quality medical and surgical care performed in an outpatient surgical facility, office, hospital, or any other location in this State;
(23) Willfully submits false statements to collect fees for which services are not provided;
(24) Was subject to investigation or disciplinary action by a licensing or disciplinary authority or by a court of any state or country for an act that would be grounds for disciplinary action under this section and the licensee:
(i) Surrendered the license issued by the state or country to the state or country; or
(ii) Allowed the license issued by the state or country to expire or lapse;
(25) Knowingly fails to report suspected child abuse in violation of § 5-704 of the Family Law Article;
(26) Fails to educate a patient being treated for breast cancer of alternative methods of treatment as required by § 20-113 of the Health – General Article;
(27) Sells, prescribes, gives away, or administers drugs for illegal or illegitimate medical purposes;
(28) Fails to comply with the provisions of § 12-102 of this article;
(29) Refuses, withholds from, denies, or discriminates against an individual with regard to the provision of professional services for which the licensee is licensed and qualified to render because the individual is HIV positive;
(30) Except as to an association that has remained in continuous existence since July 1, 1963:
(i) Associates with a pharmacist as a partner or co-owner of a pharmacy for the purpose of operating a pharmacy;
(ii) Employs a pharmacist for the purpose of operating a pharmacy; or
(iii) Contracts with a pharmacist for the purpose of operating a pharmacy;
(31) Except in an emergency life-threatening situation where it is not feasible or practicable, fails to comply with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines on universal precautions;
(32) Fails to display the notice required under § 14-415 of this subtitle;
(33) Fails to cooperate with a lawful investigation conducted by the Board;
(34) Is convicted of insurance fraud as defined in § 27-801 of the Insurance Article;
(35) Is in breach of a service obligation resulting from the applicant’s or licensee’s receipt of State or federal funding for the licensee’s medical education;
(36) Willfully makes a false representation when seeking or making application for licensure or any other application related to the practice of medicine;
(37) By corrupt means, threats, or force, intimidates or influences, or attempts to intimidate or influence, for the purpose of causing any person to withhold or change testimony in hearings or proceedings before the Board or those otherwise delegated to the Office of Administrative Hearings;
(38) By corrupt means, threats, or force, hinders, prevents, or otherwise delays any person from making information available to the Board in furtherance of any investigation of the Board;
(39) Intentionally misrepresents credentials for the purpose of testifying or rendering an expert opinion in hearings or proceedings before the Board or those otherwise delegated to the Office of Administrative Hearings; or
(40) Fails to keep adequate medical records as determined by appropriate peer review.
On the filing of certified docket entries with the Board by the Office of the Attorney General, the Board shall order the suspension of a license if the licensee is convicted of or pleads guilty or nolo contendere with respect to a crime involving moral turpitude, whether or not any appeal or other proceeding is pending to have the conviction or plea set aside. After completion of the appellate process if the conviction has not been reversed or the plea has not been set aside with respect to a crime involving moral turpitude, the Board shall order the revocation of a license on the certification by the Office of the Attorney General[vii].
Pursuant to Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-405.1, if after a hearing under § 14-405 of this subtitle the Board finds that there are grounds under § 14-404 of this subtitle to suspend or revoke a license to practice medicine or osteopathy, or to reprimand a licensed physician or osteopath, the Board may impose a fine subject to the Board’s regulations:
(1) Instead of suspending the license; or
(2) In addition to suspending or revoking the license or reprimanding the licensee.
[i] Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-301.
[ii] Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-302.
[iii] Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-306.
[iv] Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-307.
[v] Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-316.
[vi] Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-317.
[vii] Md. HEALTH OCCUPATIONS Code Ann. § 14-404.