January 22, 2021

Audit Faults Oregon Mortuary Board for Inspection Lapse

GL Solutions regulatory news

In a recently released audit, the Oregon Secretary of State’s Office faulted the Oregon Mortuary and Cemetery Board for insufficient inspection frequency, inadequate financial controls and for reimbursement practices that don’t adhere to state policy. Due in part to a vacancy in an inspector position, inspections of licensed death care facilities did not occur in Oregon for more than a year, from September 2018 to January 2020. This insufficiency, the audit notes, “could result in death care facilities not being held accountable for protecting the public health.”

R.I. Doc Suspended for Exposing Patients to COVID

The license of a Rhode Island doctor was suspended Jan. 14 after investigators discovered that he had exposed patients knowingly to COVID. According to The Providence Journal, Anthony Farina runs at least six medical practices in Rhode Island. In late November, state regulators determined, he continued to work even after becoming symptomatic. The director of the state health department has prohibited him from practicing until allowed to do so either by the department of health or the Rhode Island Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline.

Va. Gov. Unveils Recreational Pot Legislation

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam unveiled legislation Jan. 13 that would legalize recreational marijuana use, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Legal sales would begin in 2023, and the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority would be responsible for creating regulations and issuing licenses. Virginia would become the first state in the South to legalize recreational marijuana use.

Wis. Pharmacist Suspended for Destroying Vaccine

The Wisconsin Pharmacy Examining Board on Jan. 13 suspended the license of a pharmacist who destroyed more than 500 doses of a COVID vaccine. Steven Brandenburg destroyed the vaccine in December, according to the Associated Press, because he believed it could alter people’s DNA.

Okla. Revamps Refresher Course for Nurses

In response to a nursing shortage, Oklahoma has revamped a refresher course for professionals without active licenses. The time needed to complete the course has been halved, according to KJRH.com. The nurse shortage is due in part to the COVID epidemic and in part to the retirement of many older nurses.

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