Our healthcare business law firm works with many chiropractors on licensure and compliance matters. The rules governing chiropractors are not found within Georgia’s Medical Practice Act, and chiropractors are not governed by the Georgia Composite Medical Board (“GCMB”). See O.C.G.A. §§ 43-34-22, 43-9-2. Rather, the chiropractic rules are found in Title 43, Chapter 9 of the Georgia Code, which create the Georgia Board of Chiropractic Examiners (“GBCE”). During our 2020 holiday blogging, we blogged about the GCMB (“12 Days of the Georgia Composite Medical Board”) providing an overview thereof. Herein, we will provide a similar (albeit less holiday themed) overview of the GBCE. A forthcoming blog will focus on the scope of chiropractic practice in Georgia.
If you are a chiropractor, or doctor of chiropractor, or D.C., in Georgia, you are familiar with the GBCE. Under Georgia Code section 43-9-6.1, the GBCE is authorized to:
(1) Adopt, amend, and repeal such rules and regulations not inconsistent with this chapter necessary for the proper administration and enforcement of said chapter;
(2) Examine, issue, renew, and reinstate the licenses of duly qualified applicants for licensure to practice chiropractic in this state;
(3) Deny, suspend, revoke, or otherwise sanction licenses to practice chiropractic in this state;
(4) Initiate investigations for the purpose of discovering violations of this chapter;
(5) Conduct hearings upon charges calling for the discipline of a licensee or on violations of this chapter;
(6) Issue to chiropractors, licensed under this chapter, certificates under the seal of the board evidencing such licensure and signed, either by hand or facsimile signature, by the president of the board and the division director; and
(7) Expunge or delete from the disciplinary record of any licensee advertising violations not defined in the rules of the board as immoral and unprofessional conduct or relating to reasonable care and skill in the treatment of a patient.
There are six board members comprising the GBCE: “five practicing chiropractors who shall be appointed by the Governor with the approval of the Secretary of State and confirmation by the Senate” and “a sixth member who shall be appointed by the Governor from the public at large and who shall not be in any way connected to practicing chiropractic.” O.C.G.A. § 43-9-2. Each member serves different length terms from two years to five years. See id.; O.C.G.A. § 43-9-3. The board elects a president and vice president. O.C.G.A. § 43-9-4. The GBCE meets ever other month, with the next meeting on May 7, 2021.
- Rules and Policies
The GBCE also promulgates its own rules and regulations, found within Chapter 100 of the Georgia Rules and Regulations. The GBCE is housed within the Georgia Secretary of State’s professional licensing board division, and the website is here. The GBCE also proposes and adopts useful policies that offer guidance for chiropractors to review, such as “Policy #4 Guidelines for Reactivating an Inactive License.”
For chiropractors in Georgia, it is important to be familiar with the laws, rules, and policies of the GBCE. Our attorneys are experienced in advising chiropractic clients on GBCE matters, including licensing, renewal, reporting, and disciplinary matters. If you have questions about or would like to discuss this blog post, you may contact our healthcare and business law firm at (404) 685-1662 (Atlanta) or (706) 722-7886 (Augusta), or by email, firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also learn more about our law firm by visiting www.hamillittle.com.
*Disclaimer: Thoughts shared here do not constitute legal advice.