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California Medical License

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kntran1010

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Hi everyone.
I am a 3rd year DO resident at an ACGME residency program in NY. I will be starting at a fellowship program in California. Part of the requirement was to obtain a medical license prior to the start of fellowship in July. From my understanding, I have to apply through the Osteopathic Medical Board since I am a DO medical student and only took the COMLEX exams. Is this correct or I have to apply through the California Medical Board? Either way, I read that you will need to finish 36 months of trainee period before you can apply for license. So, does it mean I have to graduate from residency before I can apply for the CA license? But then I wouldn't get the license on time to start fellowship. How do everyone go about this whole proccess? Thank you so much. I tried to look up this issue but can't find a clear answer to this.
 

hallowmann

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You have to apply through the Osteopathic Medical Board since you are a DO, period. It has nothing to do with taking COMLEX or training at any specific program. You're a DO, that is the medical board you get licensed through.

You need to look at the actual documents. There is a different process for people joining training programs and those that have not completed 36 months of training. You may have to apply for a Post-graduate training license, but I would honestly reach out and ask your fellowship program about this as they may direct you to getting a specific type of license.

Do you have an unrestricted full license in NY? If you do and you can demonstrate you completed 1 yr of GME, you can still apply. If you do not, and your fellowship requires you to have full CA license prior to starting, then it might be in your interest to get the NY license first and then apply, but don't do this before talking to your program because it will cost money and I have no idea how long getting a NY license takes (although I've heard its not too long).

The OMBC is horribly unresponsive to emails or pretty much almost any way of contacting them. The licensing process takes on the order of 4-6 months. Mine took 6, and I've heard from MDs that the CMB can take just as long. Be prepared for that and work on this as soon as you can.
 
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kntran1010

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You have to apply through the Osteopathic Medical Board since you are a DO, period. It has nothing to do with taking COMLEX or training at any specific program. You're a DO, that is the medical board you get licensed through.

You need to look at the actual documents. There is a different process for people joining training programs and those that have not completed 36 months of training. You may have to apply for a Post-graduate training license, but I would honestly reach out and ask your fellowship program about this as they may direct you to getting a specific type of license.

Do you have an unrestricted full license in NY? If you do and you can demonstrate you completed 1 yr of GME, you can still apply. If you do not, and your fellowship requires you to have full CA license prior to starting, then it might be in your interest to get the NY license first and then apply, but don't do this before talking to your program because it will cost money and I have no idea how long getting a NY license takes (although I've heard its not too long).

The OMBC is horribly unresponsive to emails or pretty much almost any way of contacting them. The licensing process takes on the order of 4-6 months. Mine took 6, and I've heard from MDs that the CMB can take just as long. Be prepared for that and work on this as soon as you can.
Got it, thank you very much. I saw on their website, there is a new legislation change that starting 01/01/2022, residents are egligible to apply for the license after 12 months, not 36 months anymore. So I may still be on track for the license application. Once again, thank you for your reply
 

medstudent2088

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Got it, thank you very much. I saw on their website, there is a new legislation change that starting 01/01/2022, residents are egligible to apply for the license after 12 months, not 36 months anymore. So I may still be on track for the license application. Once again, thank you for your reply
Hey, im in basically the exact same situation as you. However on reading the website it says:
"Applicants applying after January 1, 2022 are eligible to apply for a physician and surgeon license upon completion of 12 months of postgraduate training. Note: Effective January 1, 2022 applicants not holding a full, unrestricted license are required to complete 36 months of postgraduate training, 24 months of which must be in the same training program as a condition of retaining their physician and surgeon license. This is the same form for demonstrating completion of 12 months and/or, if required, 36 months of postgraduate training"

This is confusing as it says both 12 months and 36 months post grad training is required. Do you know which this is? Im a PGY3 as well and wondering if I can get my PD to fill out the form now or if i need to wait till after June 30th which will be difficult as i will be out of state.
 

Smurfette

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Hey, im in basically the exact same situation as you. However on reading the website it says:
"Applicants applying after January 1, 2022 are eligible to apply for a physician and surgeon license upon completion of 12 months of postgraduate training. Note: Effective January 1, 2022 applicants not holding a full, unrestricted license are required to complete 36 months of postgraduate training, 24 months of which must be in the same training program as a condition of retaining their physician and surgeon license. This is the same form for demonstrating completion of 12 months and/or, if required, 36 months of postgraduate training"

This is confusing as it says both 12 months and 36 months post grad training is required. Do you know which this is? Im a PGY3 as well and wondering if I can get my PD to fill out the form now or if i need to wait till after June 30th which will be difficult as i will be out of state.

I read that and interpret it to mean they will grandfather people who are fully licensed in other states a full license with only one year of training, but for people applying for their first ever unrestricted license, they're requiring at least 3 PGY years. Sounds very poorly written so I'd actually ask the board for clarification. Someone needs to fix the wording on the website for clarity.

If you are 3 months from graduating, you can probably apply now since it takes a bit to process the application.
 
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NotAProgDirector

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I'm almost certain that first sentence should say "before". The current rule from the MBC is that everyone is on a training license for the first three years, and after completion of 3 years of training you must apply for a full license (I think you can stay on a training license for 6 more months)
 

hallowmann

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I read that and interpret it to mean they will grandfather people who are fully licensed in other states a full license with only one year of training, but for people applying for their first ever unrestricted license, they're requiring at least 3 PGY years. Sounds very poorly written so I'd actually ask the board for clarification. Someone needs to fix the wording on the website for clarity.

If you are 3 months from graduating, you can probably apply now since it takes a bit to process the application.
This was my understanding as well after reading more on the website. To be fair it's an osteopathic organization and being poorly written is kind of par for the course, kind of like the COMLEXs.
 
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NotAProgDirector

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... and I completely missed the fact that you're a DO and Cali has a separate DO board. So you can ignore my above post.
 
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medstudent2088

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Got it, thank you very much. I saw on their website, there is a new legislation change that starting 01/01/2022, residents are egligible to apply for the license after 12 months, not 36 months anymore. So I may still be on track for the license application. Once again, thank you for your reply
did you end up getting your license yet? I've sent in my application with the $200 application fee check a few days ago.

Curious since im out of state too, how did u get the fingerprint cards? that requires us to get a hold of someone to send them to our house, however but that requires me to get a hold of someone and ive called and emailed everyone multiple times without success.
 

hallowmann

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did you end up getting your license yet? I've sent in my application with the $200 application fee check a few days ago.

Curious since im out of state too, how did u get the fingerprint cards? that requires us to get a hold of someone to send them to our house, however but that requires me to get a hold of someone and ive called and emailed everyone multiple times without success.
You have to email them specifically for the fingerprint cards with your address. I sent an email to them with the address along with a couple questions, and received no response. Then about a few weeks later I received the fingerprint cards in the mail. I submitted the stuff for the background check and then about 4 mos later received notification that my background check had cleared and they are "reviewing my application". Whole thing from submission of the app to receiving the license took 6 months.
 

hopefulgasman

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If we plan on practicing in California in July 2023, would applying now be too early? Can one even apply 14 months in advance?
 

hallowmann

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If we plan on practicing in California in July 2023, would applying now be too early? Can one even apply 14 months in advance?
If you qualify for licensure, it doesn't matter when you apply. You'll just end up renewing earlier or just paying to have a license you don't need yet. If you know for sure you'll be getting it, then a year early isn't a big deal and you can at least know it won't be a barrier for finding a job. I actually applied about 14 mos before it was needed, but like I said above I got it more like 8 mos early.
 

hopefulgasman

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If you qualify for licensure, it doesn't matter when you apply. You'll just end up renewing earlier or just paying to have a license you don't need yet. If you know for sure you'll be getting it, then a year early isn't a big deal and you can at least know it won't be a barrier for finding a job. I actually applied about 14 mos before it was needed, but like I said above I got it more like 8 mos early
And if we’re open to multiple states, with two in mind, it’s best to apply for licensure to both and then look for jobs later right? Since the licensing timeline is so drawn out. The other state I’m looking at is considered even more challenging to obtain licensure than California
 

EmergDO

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And if we’re open to multiple states, with two in mind, it’s best to apply for licensure to both and then look for jobs later right? Since the licensing timeline is so drawn out. The other state I’m looking at is considered even more challenging to obtain licensure than California
I would look for jobs first, license later. You can start looking this summer for jobs and give yourself plenty of time to get a license in your state of choice (hopefully with your new job paying for it). Just don’t put off looking until this time next year and you’ll be fine.
 

hallowmann

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And if we’re open to multiple states, with two in mind, it’s best to apply for licensure to both and then look for jobs later right? Since the licensing timeline is so drawn out. The other state I’m looking at is considered even more challenging to obtain licensure than California
Unless you actually have a high likelihood of working in the state, I wouldn't just apply for multiple licenses. Some states have high costs, additional exams (I'm looking at you TX), and have more invasive questions than others. They all also have slightly different requirements, which can make them each more expensive and burdensome to maintain. You also run the risk of getting denied a license, which is a question that comes up on future license applications.

Figure out where you want to end up first, look for jobs, and when its more clear apply. It helps to have the license, but it really doesn't matter as long as you have it before you'd be set to start work.
 

octap

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sorry to revive an old thread but if someone has completed PGY1/12 months out of state and will be moving and completing PGY2 and beyond in California, but has not sat for level 3 yet, do you apply for PTL or full license?
 
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