Health care professionals get fee break
By The Associated Press
Published: Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012, 9:00 p.m.
HARRISBURG — Pennsylvania doctors and some other health professionals will pay less to renew their two-year state licenses.
The State Board of Medicine voted this summer to waive the $360 cost for medical doctors and the lower fees for others.
The board has $31.8 million in the bank, or more than four times its $7 million annual budget.
“It just so happens that they've built up a sizable reserve over the past several years,” spokesman Ron Ruman said. “Their feeling right now is they're good for the next two years, based on past experience.”
The money pays to investigate complaints and take disciplinary action.
It also is used to develop new regulations and administer the board itself.
It also funds the cost to defend lawsuits.
“Chances are we're going to be fine, barring a never-before-seen catastrophic expense,” Ruman said.
The deadline to renew for 2013 and 2014 is the end of December.
Ruman says state law prevents surplus money in that account from being used for other purposes by state government, which is in the midst of a several-year budget crunch.
Nearly 75,000 people are licensed by the board, including physician assistants, acupuncturists, nurse-midwives, athletic trainers and respiratory therapists.
The board consists of state officials, two people chosen from the general public, six doctors, a nurse-midwife and others subject to licensing.
Members are chosen by the governor, subject to Senate approval.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.