About the Medical Board
History of the Board
The Arkansas State Medical Board is charged by the General Assembly to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the people of the State of Arkansas with the goal that all citizens are provided with the highest quality health care. The Arkansas State Medical Board was established by the Medical Practices Act, Act 65 of 1955 and Act 289 of 1957 from which the Board is empowered to license and regulate the practice of medicine. In 1971, the Arkansas Osteopathic Board was abolished and the Arkansas State Medical Board assumed its licensing and regulatory duties. Since then, the Medical Board has assumed the licensing regulatory responsibilities for other allied health professions, including Occupational Therapists, Respiratory Therapists, Physician Assistants and Radiologist Assistants.
The Medical Board consists of fourteen members appointed by the Governor for six-year terms. Ten members, appointed upon the recommendation of the Arkansas Medical Society, are duly qualified, licensed, and active medical practitioners: two members appointed from each of the four congressional districts and two members are appointed at large. One member, appointed upon the recommendation of the Arkansas Osteopathic Medical Association (AOMA), is a duly qualified, licensed active practitioner of osteopathy. One member is a licensed practicing physician appointed upon the recommendation of the Physicians' Section of the Arkansas Medical, Dental and Pharmaceutical Association (AMDPA). Two citizen members are not actively engaged in or retired from the practice of medicine: one represents consumers and one is 60 years of age or older and represents the elderly. These two positions are full voting members and may not be held by the same person.
The Arkansas State Medical Board is empowered to license the following medical professions:
- Medical Doctors
- Physician Assistants
- Occupational Therapy Assistants
- Radiology Practitioner Assistants
- Doctors of Osteopathy
- Occupational Therapists
- Respiratory Therapists
- Medical Corporations
Permanent licenses are issued when a physician completes the application process and their file has been presented and approved by the Medical Board. If the physician meets the criteria, a temporary permit may be issued while waiting for their file to be presented at the next regularly scheduled board meeting. Physician Assistants must complete the application process, appear before the PA Advisory Committee along with their supervising physician, so the application can be reviewed and approved before a license is issued. Permanent licenses and temporary permits for Occupational Therapists, Occupational Therapy Assistants, Radiologist Assistants, and Respiratory Therapists are issued when the application process is completed and files are reviewed.
The Arkansas State Medical Board's mission is to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the people of the State of Arkansas with the goal that all citizens are provided with the highest quality health care. The Medical Board receives and reviews complaints against each type of medical profession it licenses. All complaints received are reviewed by the Medical Board to determine if there have been any violations of the Medical Practices Act. If the Medical Board determines that violations have occurred, disciplinary actions are taken.
Centralized Credentials Verification Service (CCVS)
Act 1066 of 1995 created the Arkansas State Medical Board's Centralized Credentials Verification Service (CCVS). Arkansas was first in the nation to base a Centralized Credentials Verification Service within the licensing agency. State law allows the Arkansas State Medical Board to release, with a practitioner's written authorization, verification of credentials as needed by credentialing/healthcare organizations. Information furnished by the Medical Board to a credentialing/healthcare organization shall be used solely for the purpose of verifying, issuing, and renewing credentials.
Act 1410 of 1999 replaced Act 1066. The act mandates that credentialing/healthcare organizations, along with physicians, utilize the CCVS program. However, this mandate will not be effective until the program:
- receives certification by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as a certified credentials verification organization (CVO);
- demonstrates compliance with the principles for credentials verification organizations set forth by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations; and
- documents compliance with the Arkansas Department of Health Rules and Regulations applicable to credentialing.