§88. Emergency Medical Services' Board
The Emergency Medical Services' Board, as established by Title 5, section 12004-A, subsection 15, is responsible for the emergency medical services program. [1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD).]
1. Composition; rules; meetings. The board's composition, conduct and compensation are as follows.
A. The board has one member representing each region and 11 persons in addition. Of the additional persons, one is an emergency physician, one a representative of emergency medical dispatch providers, one a representative of the public, one a representative of for-profit ambulance services, one an emergency professional nurse, one a representative of nontransporting emergency medical services, one a representative of hospitals, one a fire chief, one a representative of a statewide association of fire chiefs, one a municipal emergency medical services provider and one a representative of not-for-profit ambulance services. The members that represent for-profit ambulance services, nontransporting emergency medical services and not-for-profit ambulance services must be licensed emergency medical services persons. One of the nonpublic members must be a volunteer emergency medical services provider. Appointments are for 3-year terms. Members are appointed by the Governor. The state medical director is an ex officio nonvoting member of the board. [2013, c. 62, §1 (AMD).]
B. The board shall elect its own chair to serve for a 2-year term. The board may adopt internal rules that may include, but are not limited to, termination of board membership as a consequence of irregular attendance. If a board member does not serve a full term of appointment, the Governor shall appoint a successor to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the term. Any board member may be removed by the Governor for cause. The board may have a common seal. The board may establish subcommittees as it determines appropriate. [1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD).]
C. The board shall meet at least quarterly, and at the call of its chair or at the request of 7 members. When the board meets, members are entitled to compensation according to the provisions of Title 5, chapter 379. [1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD).]
D. A majority of the members appointed and currently serving constitutes a quorum for all purposes and no decision of the board may be made without a quorum present. A majority vote of those present and voting is required for board action, except that for purposes of either granting a waiver of any of its rules or deciding to pursue the suspension or revocation of a license, the board may take action only if the proposed waiver, suspension or revocation receives a favorable vote from at least 2/3 of the members present and voting and from no less than a majority of the appointed and currently serving members. The board may use video conferencing and other technologies to conduct its business but is not exempt from Title 1, chapter 13, subchapter 1. Members of the board, its subcommittees or its staff may participate in a meeting of the board, subcommittees or staff via video conferencing, conference telephone or similar communications equipment by means of which all persons participating in the meeting can hear each other, and participation in a meeting pursuant to this subsection constitutes presence in person at such meeting. [2007, c. 274, §19 (AMD).]
[ 2013, c. 62, §1 (AMD) .]
2. Functions. The board shall perform the following functions.
A. The board shall direct the operations of the emergency medical services program. [1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD).]
B. With the advice of the commissioner, the board shall adopt rules in accordance with the Maine Administrative Procedure Act to carry out this chapter. In order to encourage participation at rule-making hearings by emergency medical services volunteers, the board shall hold hearings in each region as determined necessary. Each hearing must be held in the evening or at times convenient to the public and may use available technology. At least 2 members of the board shall attend each hearing. [1999, c. 182, §12 (AMD).]
C. The board shall grant licenses pursuant to this chapter. [1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD).]
D. The board shall specify in rules the criteria that must be met as a precondition to offering an emergency medical services course, refresher course or continuing education course. The board shall work toward developing consistent educational programming in terms of course content, course requirements and quality of instruction. The board shall adopt rules, which are routine technical rules pursuant to Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2-A, regarding the requirements for certification and licensing of persons engaged in emergency medical services education and training. [2011, c. 271, §14 (AMD).]
E. The board shall keep records and minutes of its activities and meetings. These records and minutes must be made easily accessible to the public and be provided expeditiously upon request. The board may prepare, publish and disseminate educational and other materials to improve emergency medical patient care. [2009, c. 571, Pt. Y, §1 (AMD).]
F. [1991, c. 588, §16 (RP).]
F-1. The director must be qualified by training or by experience and is appointed by the board with approval of the commissioner. The director serves for an indefinite term, subject to removal for cause. [1999, c. 182, §13 (AMD).]
G. The board shall submit to the commissioner its budgetary requirements in the same manner as is provided in Title 5, section 1665. The department shall serve as the fiscal agent for Maine Emergency Medical Services. [1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD).]
H. With the approval of the commissioner, the board may enter into contracts, subject to provisions of state law, and delegate this authority to the director. The board may also delegate, through rules, to staff, any provision necessary to carry out this chapter, including the process of hearings. Funds appropriated or allocated to the board to be contracted with the regional councils may be disbursed on a sole-source contract basis, according to guidelines established by the board. Funds must be expended in accordance with standard state contract or grant procedures and guidelines where appropriate. [1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD).]
I. The board may establish and collect licensure fees, application fees, examination fees, course and conference fees, tuition and other charges as determined necessary by the board for the efficient administration of this chapter. All funds received pursuant to this paragraph must be deposited into a nonlapsing fund established for the purpose. Maine Emergency Medical Services shall administer the fund with the advice and consent of the commissioner. Funds must be deposited with the Treasurer of State to the credit of the fund and may be invested as provided by law. Interest on these investments must be credited to the fund. [1991, c. 588, §16 (NEW).]
J. The board shall establish and maintain a statewide quality assurance and improvement committee and shall adopt rules, which are routine technical rules pursuant to Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter II-A, regarding the requirements and authority of the statewide quality assurance and improvement committee. [1999, c. 182, §14 (NEW).]
[ 2011, c. 271, §14 (AMD) .]
3. Authority. In addition to authority otherwise conferred, the board or, as delegated, its subcommittee or staff may, for each violation of applicable laws, rules or conditions of licensure or registration, in accordance with the procedures established in section 90-A and any rules adopted by the board, take one or more of the following actions:
A. Issue warnings, censures or reprimands to a licensee. Each warning, censure or reprimand issued must be based upon violations of different applicable laws, rules or conditions of licensure or must be based upon separate instances of actionable conduct or activity; [2001, c. 229, §4 (NEW).]
B. Suspend a license or registration for up to 90 days for each violation of applicable laws, rules and conditions of licensure or registration or for each instance of actionable conduct or activity. Suspensions may be set to run concurrently or consecutively and may not exceed one year in total. Execution of all or any portion of a term of suspension may be stayed pending successful completion of conditions of probation, although the suspension remains part of the licensee's record; [2001, c. 229, §4 (NEW).]
C. Impose civil penalties of up to $1,500 for each violation of applicable laws, rules and conditions of licensure or for each instance of actionable conduct or activity; [2001, c. 229, §4 (NEW).]
D. Impose conditions of probation upon an applicant or licensee. Probation may run for that time period as the board, its subcommittee or staff determines appropriate. Probation may include conditions such as: additional continuing education; medical, psychiatric or mental health consultations or evaluations; mandatory professional or occupational supervision of the applicant or licensee; and other conditions as the board, its subcommittee or staff determines appropriate. Costs incurred in the performance of terms of probation are borne by the applicant or licensee. Failure to comply with the conditions of probation is a ground for disciplinary action against a licensee; [2011, c. 271, §15 (AMD).]
E. Execute a consent agreement that resolves a complaint or investigation without further proceedings. Consent agreements may be entered into only with the consent of the applicant or licensee, the board, its subcommittee or staff and the Department of the Attorney General. Any remedy, penalty or fine or cost recovery that is otherwise available by law, even if only in the jurisdiction of the District Court, may be achieved by consent agreement, including long-term suspension and permanent revocation of a professional license. A consent agreement is not subject to review or appeal and may be modified only by a writing executed by all parties to the original consent agreement. A consent agreement is enforceable by an action in Superior Court; or [2011, c. 271, §16 (AMD).]
F. Assess a licensee the costs of investigation and adjudicatory hearings relating to that licensee. [2011, c. 271, §17 (NEW).]
[ 2011, c. 271, §§15-17 (AMD) .]
4. Authority to issue letters of guidance. In addition to authority otherwise conferred, the board or, as delegated, its subcommittee or staff may issue a letter of guidance or concern to an applicant or licensee.
A. Letter of guidance or concern may be used to educate, reinforce knowledge regarding legal or professional obligations and express concern over action or inaction by the licensee or applicant that does not rise to the level of misconduct sufficient to merit disciplinary action. The issuance of a letter of guidance or concern is not a formal proceeding and does not constitute an adverse disciplinary action of any form. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a letter of guidance or concern is not confidential. The board or, as delegated, its subcommittee or staff may place a letter of guidance or concern, together with any underlying complaint, report and investigation materials, in a licensee's or applicant's file for a specified amount of time, not to exceed 10 years. Any letters, complaints and materials placed on file may be accessed and considered by the board, its subcommittee or staff in any subsequent action commenced against the applicant or licensee within the specified time frame. [2001, c. 229, §4 (NEW).]
[ 2001, c. 229, §4 (NEW) .]
5. Notice of action. In any proceeding under this section with regard to an ambulance service owned and operated by a municipality or a private ambulance service with which a municipality contracts for services, if the board takes action under subsection 3 or 4, the board shall notify in writing the town manager or city manager and the municipal officers of the municipality that owns and operates or contracts with the ambulance service within 5 business days of taking the action.
[ 2015, c. 6, §2 (NEW) .]
1981, c. 661, §2 (NEW). 1983, c. 812, §§190,191 (AMD). 1985, c. 730, §§12,16 (AMD). 1987, c. 273, §5 (AMD). 1989, c. 503, §B120 (AMD). 1989, c. 857, §§70,71 (AMD). 1991, c. 588, §16 (AMD). 1991, c. 742, §4 (AMD). 1993, c. 575, §1 (AMD). 1995, c. 161, §9 (AMD). 1997, c. 644, §2 (AMD). 1999, c. 182, §§12-14 (AMD). 2001, c. 229, §4 (AMD). 2001, c. 713, §1 (AMD). 2007, c. 274, §§18-20 (AMD). 2009, c. 571, Pt. Y, §1 (AMD). 2011, c. 271, §§14-17 (AMD). 2013, c. 62, §1 (AMD). 2015, c. 6, §2 (AMD).