Sanctions vs. Board Actions
In the world of healthcare the terms Sanctions and Board Actions are commonly used but often misunderstood. Sanctions and exclusions are actions taken by state and federal agencies with sanctioning authority against an individual or entity. Usually, the individual is a licensed healthcare professional. A Board Action, however, is an adverse action taken by a state licensing board against a healthcare professional's license.
Most state healthcare licensing authorities, like the Texas Medical Board and the Texas Board of Nursing, are self-policing agencies who discipline their members who violate certain rules and regulations. When a license holder is disciplined, it is referred to as an adverse action against their license. These adverse actions are also referred to as Board Actions or Board Orders. A Board Order or Board Action can result in a Sanction by another state or federal agency with sanctioning authority, like the Office of Inspector General of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, for example.
Once the name appears on the state or federal Office of Inspector General (OIG) exclusion lists, the provider can no longer assess care, or order or prescribe services to any Medicaid or other program recipients. To ensure program compliance, the federal OIG as well as certain state OIG urge providers to check the OIG exclusions list monthly. Furthermore, healthcare providers may be subject to civil monetary penalties for employing or contracting with an excluded individual or entity. While Board Actions can be helpful in your organization's employee screening process, not engaging in a responsible sanction screening could end up costing you money as it is enforced by federal and state agencies.
Photo credit: Trey Pennington