(a) The board may upon its own motion based upon credible information, and shall, upon the written complaint of any person, cause an investigation to be made to determine whether grounds exist for disciplinary action under this article or the legislative rules of the board.
(b) Upon initiation or receipt of the complaint, the board shall provide a copy of the complaint to the licensee or registrant.
(c) After reviewing any information obtained through an investigation, the board shall determine if probable cause exists that the licensee or registrant has violated any provision of this article.
(d) Upon a finding that probable cause exists that the licensee or registrant has violated any provision of this article or rules promulgated pursuant to this article, the board may enter into a consent decree or hold a hearing for the suspension or revocation of the license or registration or the imposition of sanctions against the licensee or registrant.
(e) Any member of the board may issue subpoenas and subpoenas duces tecum to obtain testimony and documents to aid in the investigation of allegations against any person regulated by the article.
(f) Any member of the board may sign a consent decree or other legal document on behalf of the board.
(g) The board may, after notice and opportunity for hearing, deny or refuse to renew, suspend or revoke the license or registration of, impose probationary conditions upon or take disciplinary action against, any licensee or registrant for any of the following reasons once a violation has been proven by a preponderance of the evidence:
(1) Obtaining a license or registration by fraud, misrepresentation or concealment of material facts;
(2) Being convicted of a felony or misdemeanor crime of moral turpitude;
(3) Being guilty of unprofessional conduct as defined by legislative rule of the board;
(4) Violating provisions of this article, rule or a lawful order of the board;
(5) Providing substandard care due to a deliberate or negligent act or failure to act regardless of whether actual injury to a patient or client is established;
(6) As an assistant, exceeding the authority to perform components of service selected and delegated by the supervising speech-language pathologist or audiologist regardless of whether actual injury to a patient is established;
(7) Knowingly delegating responsibilities to an individual who does not have the knowledge, skills or abilities to perform those responsibilities;
(8) As a licensee, failing to provide appropriate supervision to a speech-language pathology assistant or audiology assistant in accordance with this article and legislative rules of the board;
(9) Practicing when competent services to recipients may not be provided due to physical or mental impairment;
(10) Having had a speech-language pathologist or audiologist license or assistant registration revoked or suspended, other disciplinary action taken, or an application for licensure or registration refused, revoked or suspended by the proper authorities of another jurisdiction;
(11) Engaging in sexual misconduct which includes:
(A) Initiating or soliciting sexual relationships, whether consensual or nonconsensual, while a professional relationship exists between the licensee or registrant and a patient or client; or
(B) Making sexual advances, requesting sexual favors or engaging in physical contact of a sexual nature with a patient or client;
(12) Aiding or abetting a person who is not licensed or registered in this state and who directly or indirectly performs activities requiring a license or registration;
(13) Abandoning or neglecting a patient or client in need of immediate professional care without making reasonable arrangements for the continuation of care; or
(14) Engaging in any act which has endangered or is likely to endanger the health, welfare or safety of the public.
(h) Disciplinary action may include:
(3) Administrative fine, not to exceed $1,000 per day per violation;
(4) Mandatory attendance at continuing education seminars or other training;
(5) Practicing under supervision or other restriction;
(6) Requiring the licensee or registrant to report to the board for periodic interviews for a specified period of time;
(7) Denial, suspension, revocation or nonrenewal of license or registration; or
(8) Other disciplinary action considered by the board to be necessary to protect the public, including advising other parties whose legitimate interests may be at risk.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2016 Regular Session
The West Virginia Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.