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Emergency Workforce

Oregon Medical Board Implements Emergency Rule to Increase Physician, Physician Assistant Workforce


The Medical Board is expediting processes to allow physicians and PAs to actively assist in the state’s response to the COVID-19 emergency.


The Oregon Medical Board (OMB) has adopted a temporary, emergency rule aimed at increasing the state’s health care provider workforce. This rule is effective immediately and is comprised of three separate efforts.

The first part of the rule lifts current administrative restrictions from Emeritus and Locum Tenens physicians and physician assistants (PAs). During this emergency, Emeritus licensees are no longer restricted to volunteer practice only, and may receive payment for their medical care; Locum Tenens licensees are no longer limited to 240 days of practice per biennium and may now provide care in Oregon indefinitely. There are approximately 800 Emeritus and 500 Locum Tenens providers currently licensed with the OMB.

The second effort creates a new expedited license reactivation process for Administrative Medicine, Inactive, Lapsed, and Retired physicians and PAs who have been in active practice within the previous three years and who ended their clinical practice in good standing with the Board. The OMB currently has approximately 3,000 licensees who qualify for this expedited reactivation. Physicians and PAs who meet these qualifications may submit the Emergency Reactivation Application and supplemental materials.

The emergency rule also allows out-of-state physicians and PAs to apply to practice in Oregon if they are actively licensed and in good standing in another state. This effort was implemented on March 9, 2020, based on an existing rule adopted in 2002. Physicians and PAs who meet these qualifications submit the Emergency Authorization Application and supplemental materials. 

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