SHOW SUPPORT TO UKRAINEDONATE
Happy family

Find a legal form in minutes

Browse US Legal Forms’ largest database of 85k state and industry-specific legal forms.

South Carolina Laws on Regulation and Licensing of Veterinarians

Pursuant to the South Carolina law, there is created the State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners to be composed of nine members, one of whom must be a consumer member from the State at large, one of whom must be a licensed veterinary technician practicing in this State, one of whom must be a veterinarian from the State at large, and six of whom must be veterinarians representing each of the six congressional districts.  Each veterinarian and veterinary technician must be a resident of the State, licensed by the State, and currently practicing with at least five years of clinical experience.  Each veterinarian representing a congressional district must reside in the district that he represents. The consumer member must be a resident of this State.  The terms of the members are for six years and until their successors are appointed and qualify. The chairman may only vote in the case of a tie vote by the board.

Moreover, the veterinarian at large, the veterinary technician, and the consumer member must be appointed by the Governor.  The board must conduct an election to nominate two veterinarians from each congressional district.  The election must provide for participation by all veterinarians currently licensed and residing in the respective nominating district.  The South Carolina Veterinary Technician Association must submit up to two names to the Governor as recommendations for the veterinary technician member.  The Governor must also consider nominations from any other individual, group, or association.  If the Governor declines to appoint any of the nominees submitted, additional nominees must be submitted in the same manner.  All appointments by the Governor must be made with the advice and consent of the Senate.  Vacancies must be filled in the manner of the original appointment for the unexpired portion of the term.

However, the Governor may remove a member of the board based on grounds provided for in Section 1-3-240.  No member may be removed without first giving the member an opportunity to refute the charges filed against that member, and the member must be given a copy of the charges at the time they are filed.  If a board member is disqualified and the member’s absence results in the lack of a quorum or an adequate number of members to perform official functions, the Governor may appoint an individual to replace the member during the period of disqualification.  This individual must meet the same qualifications as the member being replaced and must take the same oath as required of other members of the board[i].

The Powers and Duties of the Board

The powers and duties of the board include:

(1) determining the eligibility of applicants for examination and licensure;

(2) examining applicants for licensure including, but not limited toL

(a) prescribing the subjects, character, and manner of licensing examinations;

(b) preparing, administering, and grading the examination or assisting in the selection of a contractor for the preparation, administration, or grading of the examination.

(3) establishing criteria for issuing, renewing, and reactivating authorizations to practice to qualified applicants, including the issuance of active or permanent, temporary, limited, and inactive licenses, or other categories as may be created;

(4) adopting the American Veterinary Medical Association Code of Professional Ethics and any additional standard of professional conduct the board deems appropriate;

(5) evaluating and approving continuing education course hours and programs;

(6) conducting hearings on alleged violations of this chapter and regulations promulgated under this chapter;

(7) resolving consumer complaints, where appropriate and possible;

(8) disciplining persons licensed under this chapter in a manner provided for in this chapter;

(9) promulgating regulations which have been submitted to the Director of the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation at least thirty days in advance of filing with the Legislative Council pursuant to Section 1-23-30;

(10) adopting and enforcing regulations for selling and dispensing prescriptions and controlled veterinary drugs, pharmaceuticals, and biologics in accordance with federal and state laws; and

(11) adopting and enforcing regulations setting minimum standards for all facilities

Furthermore, in addition to other grounds provided in Section 40-1-110, the board, after notice and a hearing conducted in accordance with the Administrative Procedures Act, may restrict or refuse to grant a license to an applicant or may refuse to renew the license of a licensed person or may suspend, revoke, or restrict a veterinarian or veterinary technician who has:

(1) violated this chapter or a regulation promulgated by the board;

(2) used a false, fraudulent, or forged statement or document or performed a fraudulent, deceitful, or dishonest act by the holder of a license in connection with a license requirement;

(3) failed to display a license;

(4) caused to be published or circulated directly or indirectly a fraudulent, false, or misleading statement as to the skill or methods of practice of a licensee;

(5) misrepresented the inspection of food for human consumption;

(6) used a false or fraudulent statement in a document connected with the practice of veterinary medicine;

(7) obtained fees or assisted in obtaining fees under deceptive, false, or fraudulent circumstances;

(8) failed to provide and maintain facilities as directed by regulation of the board;

(9) refused to allow the board or an authorized representative of the board to inspect the business premises of the licensee during regular business hours;

(10) circulated knowingly untrue, fraudulent, misleading, or deceptive advertising;

(11) engaged in unprofessional or unethical conduct in violation of the American Veterinary Medical Association Code of Professional Ethics or any other standards of professional conduct defined in this chapter or prescribed by regulations of the board;

(12) engaged in conduct determined by the board to be incompetent or negligent in the practice of veterinary medicine;

(13) made a false statement in an oath or affidavit which is required by this chapter;

(14) had another state revoke a license to practice veterinary medicine in that state, pursuant to a disciplinary proceeding;

(15) been convicted on a charge of cruelty to animals;

(16) been convicted of a federal or state law relating to narcotic drugs;

(17) a physical or mental impairment or disability which renders practice dangerous to the public;

(18) performed an act which in any way assists a person to practice in violation of this chapter;

(19) used a controlled substance for other than specific treatment of an animal patient in an illegal manner;

(20) has employed or permitted a person who does not hold a license to practice veterinary medicine in this State to perform work which, under this chapter, can lawfully be done only by a person holding a license to practice veterinary medicine;

(21) practiced veterinary medicine while under the influence of alcohol or any drug to such a degree as to adversely affect the performance of a veterinarian’s professional obligations and duties;

(22) been adjudged mentally incompetent by a court of competent jurisdiction; upon notice of a legal determination of incompetency, an individual’s license is automatically suspended until the individual is adjudged legally competent;

(23) failed to report, as required by law, or made a false report of a contagious or infectious disease;

(24) been convicted of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude; forfeiture of a bond or a plea of nolo contendere is considered the equivalent of a conviction;

(25) been disciplined by a licensing or disciplinary authority of a state, country, or nationally recognized professional organization or convicted or disciplined by a court of a state or country for an act that would be grounds for disciplinary action under this section;

(26) has engaged in a pattern or practice of violations of this chapter or regulations promulgated under this chapter.

The statute further provides that in enforcing Subsection (A), items (16), (17), (19), (21), or (22), the board upon reasonable grounds may require a licensee or applicant to submit to a mental or physical examination by physicians designated by the board.  The results of an examination are admissible in a hearing before the board, notwithstanding a claim of privilege under a contrary rule of law or statute.  For purposes of this section, a person who accepts the privilege of practicing veterinary medicine in theState or who files an application for a license to practice veterinary medicine in the State is deemed to have consented to submit to a mental or physical examination and to have waived all objections to the admissibility of the results in a hearing before the board upon the grounds that the same constitutes a privileged communication.  If a licensee or applicant fails to submit to an examination when properly directed to do so by the board, unless the failure was due to circumstances beyond the person’s control, the board must enter an order automatically suspending or denying the license pending compliance and further order of the board.  A licensee or applicant who is prohibited from practicing veterinary medicine under this subsection must be afforded at reasonable intervals an opportunity to demonstrate to the board the ability to resume or begin the practice of veterinary medicine with reasonable skill and safety to patients[ii].

Discipline of Veterinarians

Furthermore, the board must provide written acknowledgement of every initial complaint and notify the initial complainant in writing of the disposition of the matter.  Although entitled to notice, an initial complainant is not a party to the proceeding and is not entitled to appeal or otherwise seek review of the dismissal or other disposition of the matter.  The complainant has the right to be present at any disciplinary hearing but may only participate as a witness.  The disciplinary hearing must be open to the public.  The board may deliberate in executive session but must not take any final action during the executive session.

However, except as otherwise provided in this chapter, a person connected with any complaint, investigation, or other proceeding before the board, including, but not limited to, the complainant, any witness, counsel, counsel’s secretary, board member, board employee, court reporter, or investigator, must not mention the existence of the complaint, investigation, or other proceeding, disclose any information pertaining to the complaint, investigation, or other proceeding, or discuss any testimony or other evidence in the complaint, investigation, or other proceeding, except to persons involved and having a direct interest in the complaint, investigation, or other proceeding, and then only to the extent necessary for the proper disposition of the complaint, investigation, or other proceeding.  This prohibition does not apply to any matter contained in a formal complaint and answer made available for public inspection by this chapter or any matter or document disclosed in a public hearing.  Whenever the board receives information in any complaint, investigation, or other proceeding before it indicating a violation of state or federal law, the board may provide that information, to the extent the board considers necessary, to the appropriate state or federal law enforcement agency or regulatory body.

Pursuant to S.C. Code Ann. § 40-69-190, the board must make its final order, finding that a licensee has violated a provision of this chapter, available for public inspection.  The final order must include any facts or circumstances necessary to explain or support the board’s findings and describe any sanction imposed.  The board’s final order must not identify a complainant or witness involved in any disciplinary proceeding alleging sexual misconduct by the licensee upon request of the complainant or witness.

Licensing of Veterinarians

The South Carolina statutes provide that an applicant for a veterinary license examination must submit to the board, on or before a specified date to be determined by the board, a completed application on forms prescribed by the board and supported by proper credentials and the payment of a fee to be set by the board in regulation.  Fees must not be returned under any circumstances, regardless of whether the applicant is accepted for examination, fails the examination, withdraws an application, or is issued or denied a license.  If an applicant fails to take the examination for a legitimate reason, the board may allow the applicant to take the examination at a later date without having to pay another fee.  After the board accepts the application and finds that the applicant is otherwise qualified to meet the requirements necessary to practice veterinary medicine, the applicant may be examined by the board at its next scheduled examination date.  The board must give notice to the applicant of the exact time and place of the examination.  The board must conduct examinations of all applicants, and the board may examine a veterinary applicant who submits satisfactory evidence that the applicant:

  • is a graduate of a school or college of veterinary medicine accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association or holds a certificate issued by the Education Commission of Foreign Veterinary Graduates or credentials issued by a credentialing entity approved by the board; and
  • has paid the required fee.

Moreover, the board, except as otherwise provided for in this chapter, must require the applicant to take a written examination to test the applicant’s knowledge of and proficiency in subjects and techniques commonly taught in veterinary schools, or the board may accept the results of the written examinations conducted by the National Board of Veterinary Examiners or other nationally recognized examination organizations approved by the board.  The board may administer an additional examination to determine an applicant’s familiarity with applicable state law.  The board must establish a minimum passing grade for each examination given by the board.  If the applicant makes the minimum passing grade on the examination as established by the board and the board finds that the applicant is otherwise worthy, competent, and qualified, the board must issue the applicant a license to practice veterinary medicine in this State.  The examination of applicants for licenses to practice veterinary medicine must be conducted in accordance with regulations promulgated by the board[iii].

Furthermore, an applicant for a veterinary technician license examination must submit to the board, on or before a specified date to be determined by the board, a completed application on forms prescribed by the board and supported by proper credentials and the payment of a fee to be set by the board in regulation.  Fees must not be returned under any circumstances, regardless of whether the applicant is accepted for examination, fails the examination, withdraws the application, or is issued or denied a license.  If an applicant fails to take the examination for a legitimate reason, the board may allow the applicant to take the examination at a later date without having to pay another fee.  After the board accepts the application and finds that the applicant is otherwise qualified to meet the requirements necessary to practice veterinary technology, the applicant may be examined by the board at its next scheduled examination date.  The board must give notice to the applicant of the exact time and place of the examination.  The board must conduct examinations of all applicants, and the board may examine an applicant who submits satisfactory evidence that the applicant:

  • is at least eighteen years of age;
  • is a graduate of an American Veterinary Medical Association accredited school of animal technology;
  • has paid the required fee; and
  • has provided other documents as the board may require.

The statute further provides that the examination of an applicant for licensure must be conducted in accordance with regulations promulgated by the board.  The board must require the applicant to take a written examination in subjects relating to veterinary technology as the board may require.  The board must accept the Veterinary Technician National Examination or other nationally recognized examinations approved by the board.  The board may administer an additional examination to determine an applicant’s familiarity with applicable state law.  The board must establish a minimum passing grade for each examination given and must hold at least one examination annually.  Each applicant is entitled to at least one reexamination.  A person previously issued a certificate to work as a veterinary technician before August 2, 1981, by the South Carolina State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners, upon payment of the required fee must be issued a certificate by the board[iv].

Pursuant to S.C. Code Ann. § 40-69-250, a license issued pursuant to this chapter is valid for a period of time not to exceed two years.  The license may be renewed in accordance with procedures promulgated by the board through regulation upon the payment of a renewal fee and upon fulfillment of continuing education, as required by the board through regulation.  Failure to pay the renewal fee, including any late fees, before the first day of February of the renewal year renders the license void.  A licensee who allows the license to lapse by failing to renew the license in accordance with this section may be reinstated by the board upon payment of renewal fees and satisfaction of continuing education requirements, if required, by the board through regulation.  The board may assess a reinstatement fee and impose additional requirements for reinstatement as may be established by regulation.  The board also may issue a duplicate license to replace one that has been lost or destroyed upon payment of a fee established in regulation.  A person licensed pursuant to this chapter must display the license in a prominent and conspicuous place in the person’s primary place of practice.  A licensee must notify the board in writing of a change in name or mailing address within thirty days and, when requesting a name change on a license, must submit legal documentation indicating the name change.

[i] S.C. Code Ann. § 40-69-10.

[ii] S.C. Code Ann. § 40-69-110.

[iii] S.C. Code Ann. § 40-69-220.

[iv] S.C. Code Ann. § 40-69-230.


Inside South Carolina Laws on Regulation and Licensing of Veterinarians