Professional License Lawyer in North Carolina

What is the NC Board of Pharmacy Disciplinary Process?

What is the NC Board of Pharmacy Disciplinary Process?

Today, we’re going to answer the question, “What is the disciplinary process for the North Carolina Board of Pharmacy?” And the answer to that question is it is relatively straightforward.
A complaint is filed with the North Carolina Board of Pharmacy. They start an investigation. They go through the process. They may issue an order directing the licensee to provide certain documentation. If you receive an order that’s directing you to comply and you need to comply with it, and then they will come back and they will offer a pre-hearing conference.
Their pre-hearing conference is more or less a settlement conference, basically. I have been to some where it has seemed a heck of a lot more formal than the name indicates, where it’s a pre-hearing supposed to be in nomenclature only, and it comes off a little bit more formal than I’ve seen with other boards, to be quite frank with you. That’s not the end of the world, though, because at the conclusion of the pre-hearing conference, which will be in front of a couple members of the board who make up that particular committee, and at the conclusion of it, there’ll be an offer sent over to the licensee. And that offer could be, “Hey, we talked about this. We looked at some of the exhibits that would be presented if this did go to a hearing, we listened to the investigator, we listened to the licensee, and look, we don’t see anything here. We’re not going to proceed with this.” It could be other things where they say, “look, we see that there’s an infraction here. We believe that there’s an infraction here based on what we’ve seen thus far, we’re willing to offer you.” And I’m just throwing something out there as an example of public reprimand. We will fill you in on the details of it, provide an actual written offer to that, but that’s what we’re looking at. Then you would get a copy of the written offer, which would probably be in a consent order form. And then if you review that, if that’s something that the licensee wants to accept, they can do that. If you look at everything and they say, “Alright, well we want X, Y, or Z penalty associated with this,” and you the licensee say, “No, I didn’t do anything wrong. You guys are mistaken. There’s other evidence that wasn’t readily available to me at the time before I had this meeting. I want to have a hearing.” You are more than welcome to do that.
You always have a right to a contested hearing in these types of situations, especially with the NC Board of Pharmacy. And then it progresses to a hearing, you’ll receive a notice of hearing that’ll have the actual hearing date on there. You’ll be able to do what’s called Discovery, which is allow you to subpoena witnesses, request documents from the board that you might not already have or think that they have and they weren’t producing to you. Allow you to get other documentation from other people via various methods of discovery and things of that nature prior to the date of the hearing. Then you’ll actually be able to have a contested hearing with the board. The board members that were at the pre-hearing conference are supposed to recuse themselves at a contested hearing. So there are procedures in place, process in place for the NC Board of Pharmacy to ensure a proper due process and that’s what it looks like.

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