Sanctioning schedule — Development.
(1) Each of the disciplining authorities identified in RCW 18.130.040(2)(b) shall appoint a representative to review the secretary's sanctioning guidelines, as well as guidelines adopted by any of the boards and commissions, and collaborate to develop a schedule that defines appropriate ranges of sanctions that are applicable upon a determination that a license holder has committed unprofessional conduct as defined in this chapter or the chapters specified in RCW 18.130.040(2). The schedule must identify aggravating and mitigating circumstances that may enhance or reduce the sanction imposed by the disciplining authority for unprofessional conduct. The schedule must apply to all disciplining authorities. In addition, the disciplining authorities shall make provisions for instances in which there are multiple findings of unprofessional conduct. When establishing the proposed schedule, the disciplining authorities shall consider maintaining consistent sanction determinations that maximize the protection of the public's health and while maintaining the rights of health care providers of the different health professions. The disciplining authorities shall submit the proposed schedule and recommendations to modify or adopt the secretary's guidelines to the secretary no later than November 15, 2008.
(2) The secretary shall adopt rules establishing a uniform sanctioning schedule that is consistent with the proposed schedule developed under subsection (1) of this section. The schedule shall be applied to all disciplinary actions commenced under this chapter after January 1, 2009. The secretary shall use his or her emergency rule-making authority pursuant to the procedures under chapter 34.05 RCW, to adopt rules that take effect no later than January 1, 2009, to implement the schedule.
(3) The disciplining authority may determine that a case presents unique circumstances that the schedule adopted under this section does not adequately address. The disciplining authority may deviate from the schedule adopted under this section when selecting appropriate sanctions, but the disciplining authority must issue a written explanation in the order of the basis for not following the schedule.
(4) The secretary shall report to the legislature by January 15, 2009, on the adoption of the sanctioning schedule.
[2008 c 134 § 12.]
| Finding -- Intent -- Severability -- 2008 c 134: See notes following RCW 18.130.020.|