Every doctor must have a license from the state to practice medicine. Licensing guidelines are very strict, and malpractice issues could lead to licensing issues for a doctor.
If you have a situation where you feel your doctor has violated some law or ethical guidelines, then you can submit a complaint to the state. The Pennsylvania Department of State explains it takes complaints about legal, ethical and performance issues with doctors licensed in the state.
You can file your complaint by mail. You can either request a form or print one from the department’s website.
Once you file your paperwork and supporting documents as evidence, the department will review it. You will receive a confirmation that the department got your documents, but there is no way to check the pending status.
If you have a valid complaint, the department investigates. You may have to attend a formal hearing to testify against the doctor.
Depending on your case, it can take months for a resolution. The department must decide if there is a legal reason to take action against the doctor and may have to gather evidence in the case. Then, the case goes to a prosecutor to determine whether to proceed.
Keep in mind
It is important to understand that the department is not a court. It only handles issues related to state licensing. It will not handle billing issues and cannot award damages or hand down punishments beyond those dealing with licensing.
Filing a complaint can help you to take action against a doctor that has acted inappropriately or otherwise put you in harm. However, if you wish to seek monetary compensation, you will have to go to court.