As someone who practices medicine, you may worry about drug convictions you have on your record. After all, the field of medicine takes poorly to criminal convictions of many sorts, leaving you in the lurch if it happens to you. 

It is thus important to understand where you stand on a legal level when it comes to your ability to practice medicine. 

How does your history of criminal convictions come into play?

The North Carolina Medical Board (NCMB) says applicants for a medical license require you to submit to a criminal background check. This differs during the pandemic, though. The NCMB reviews “all relevant information” when processing applications. This also includes any criminal convictions. 

They consider many factors as listed in N.C. Gen. Stat. § 93B-8.1(b1). This states the board may deny an applicant based on your history of criminal convictions. This includes if the crime is sexual or violent in nature. It also includes the crimes that relate to the responsibilities and duties you have as a licensed medical professional. 

Denial for criminal history alone cannot happen

However, unless a provision of law rules otherwise, the board cannot deny your application based on criminal history alone. They also cannot deny your application based on the idea that your conviction stemmed from crimes of moral turpitude. 

Instead, they must consider specific factors like the date of the crime and your age. They also consider things like your participation in rehabilitative programs. In addition, if your application gets denied by NCMB, you can pursue an appeals process. This may allow you to fight for your right to practice medicine in spite of past convictions.