Can an Alcohol Addiction Impact my Medical Career?

Everyone faces trouble in their life. This does not exclude medical professionals. In the event that a medical professional has an addiction to alcohol, it can be difficult for them to take care of themselves, let alone tend to others. If you are facing these problems, it is important to know this is nothing to be ashamed of. However, it is important that they are taken care of as soon as possible before it can impact your life or the life of a patient. In the event that it does, it can result in significant consequences. Continue reading below to learn more.

Is My Job at Risk Because of Alcoholism?

Medical professionals who suffer from alcohol addiction and do not get help are at risk of losing their job and livelihood. This is the case even if they do not view the matter as a threat to their ability to do their job. Patients or peers of the professional who believe they have an alcohol addiction can file a complaint with the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC). This launches an investigation into the individual’s career, calling their entire practice into question. The OPMC may deem them as unable to continue treating patients. In addition to this, a patient may wish to bring a lawsuit against them. 

Consequences by the OPMC

When a medical professional is facing the OPMC investigation, it is possible for them to lose their medical license if they are believed to be a threat to their patients. This can not only impact their reputation and career, but the professional can face additional consequences as a result. A common punishment in these cases can include a censure and reprimand. It is also possible to be subject to a fine, substance abuse therapy, increased liability insurance, and more. 

How Can I Protect Myself?

Medical professionals who recognize they have an addiction and want help can avoid facing these consequences. Help can be achieved by going to the Committee on Physicians Health as soon as possible. Under the New York State Medical Board, the Committee is required to help them enter a program for rehabilitation. This can be helpful for their career, as there is a better chance a medical license will not be revoked permanently if the OPMC sees that an effort is being made to address the matter. 

Contact our Firm

When a medical professional is accused of misconduct, it is essential that they retain strong legal representation. If you require a medical law attorney for your legal matters, call Paul E. Walker, an experienced New York City OPMC & OPD Lawyer. Please contact the Walker Medical Law firm to set up a free initial consultation.