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Finding Licensing and Other Information About Doctors

We received a question about a single source for handling over one thousand queries monthly about doctors. The person requesting the information needs a source that provides basic contact information as well as information about a doctor's license. We received one response from A.J. Levy, the commentator behind Out-of-the-Box Lawyering. I contribute my two cents worth at the end.

A.J. Levy: There is a useful database, called Questionable Doctors, but it does not list all doctors or give all their information. (Editorial note: The publisher stopped updating the Questionable Doctors database during 2003.)

One of the services available on the Public Citizen Web site is an online version of the book "Questionable Doctors." It is a compendium of physicians disciplined by state and federal governments. The site describes the compendium as follows:

"Questionable Doctors is the only comprehensive, publicly available databank that contains information on doctors who have been disciplined by state medical boards and federal agencies in the past ten years. It contains data on disciplinary actions taken for medical incompetence, misprescribing drugs, sexual misconduct, criminal convictions, ethical lapses and other offenses. Questionable Doctors, unlike other online databanks, allows you to search for a doctor's name before you pay, and includes information on multiple states. Our online edition Questionable Doctors, unlike previous print versions, will provide you with more timely updates of disciplinary information as it becomes available. When all states are available online, you will be able to cross check your doctor's record nation-wide.

"You can search alphabetically by a doctor's last name, or begin your search by choosing the state in which the disciplinary action was taken."

It currently covers 42 states online. Although this does not give the questioner exactly what s/he wants, this could be a valuable research tool for your readers and subscribers.

Editor: If the source you currently use is accurate and cost-efficient, you may want to stick with it. If not, the online sources below provide information about doctors and their licenses.

Nationwide Directory of Medical Licenses: Find this database on Lexis.com. Follow this path: Public Records > People, Business & Asset Locators > License Locator > Professional Licenses. It contains licensing information about doctors and dentists from all states. Although individual documents may vary in content, most contain the following:

  • License holder's current name and business address

  • Spoken Language

  • License type and specialty

  • License number, license state & status

  • License issue date & expiration date

  • Group affiliation

  • Education

  • Dea, Tax-ID and UPIN numbers

  • Hospital privileges

Drug Enforcement Administration Registrants: Find this database on Lexis.com, Westlaw.com and AutoTrackXP (also ChoicePoint). It contains information on businesses and individuals, who are registered with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) under the Controlled Substances Act, which authorizes them to prescribe and handle controlled substances. According to the Westlaw database description, possible uses include:

  • To locate an individual's license information

  • Verify license status or license type

  • Confirm expert witness credentials

  • To locate individuals in a particular jurisdiction who have a particular type 
    of license

  • To locate an address associated with a professional or company license holder

Lexis path: Public Records > Public Records > Licenses > Miscellaneous Licenses

Westlaw path: Public Information, Records and Filings > People Locator > Professional and Commercial Licenses

Professional Licenses: Lexis, Westlaw, Accurint and AutoTrackXP (also ChoicePoint) provide databases containing information from state licensing boards. Lexis and Westlaw cover all 50 states, but not all licensing boards are available online. Accurint and AutoTrackXP cover about 37 states.

Lexis path: Public Records > People, Business & Asset Locators > License Locator > Professional Licenses

Westlaw path: Public Information, Records and Filings > Professional and Commercial Licenses



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Created: 5 September 2003
Revised: 9 May 2007 (link revisions only)
URL: https://www.virtualchase.com/ask_answer/doctors.html
Suggestions: Genie Tyburski, editor [at] virtualchase [dot] com