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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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Enforcement

Consumer Services Section

The Department of Health investigates complaints and reports involving health care practitioners regulated by the department and enforces appropriate Florida Statutes. Action which may be taken against health care practitioners is administrative in nature (e.g., reprimand, fine, restriction of practice, remedial education, administrative cost, probation, license suspension or license revocation). The department cannot represent you in civil matters to recover fees paid or seek remedies for injuries. You may wish to consult a private attorney regarding these matters.

Florida Health Care Complaint Portal

Enforcement Process Map

Frequently Asked Questions 

  • What happens to a complaint once it is filed?
  • Against whom can complaints be filed?
  • Will the person filing the complaint be required to participate in the investigation?
  • Does it cost anything to file a complaint?
  • Are complaints confidential?
  • Will the practitioner know that a complaint has been filed?
  • Can I file a complaint over the phone?
  • Is there a time limit for filing a complaint?
  • Will a pending criminal or civil action prevent the investigation of a complaint?
  • What happens to the healthcare practitioner as a result of a complaint?
  • Who will be notified throughout the process?
  • What issues are not being investigated?
  • How do I self-report?
  • Can I file my complaint anonymously?
  • What do I do if the licensee will not release my records?
  • Is the licensee allowed to charge me for a copy of my records?
  • Should I send in my medical records?

The complaint is reviewed for possible violations of the licensee’s practice act. If a violation may have occurred it is investigated and referred to the Prosecution Services Unit for a determination of probable cause. If probable cause is found, the case is referred to the board for disciplinary action; 10 days after an administrative complaint is filed the case becomes public. If probable cause is not found the case is closed and remains confidential.

Complaints can be filed against any healthcare practitioner or facility licensed or regulated by the Department of Health.  Complaints can also be filed against any individual or facility providing health care services without a valid Florida license.  Information on Regulated Professions

The department may contact the person filing the complaint to request additional information.

No; however, the person filing the complaint may be required to pay for copies of medical records.

Complaints remain confidential until 10 days after probable cause is found. If probable cause is not found the case will remain confidential. Patient identity and patient records always remain confidential.

If the complaint is opened for investigation, the healthcare practitioner will be provided a copy of the complaint.

Complaints against licensed practitioners or facilities cannot be filed over the phone. Florida law requires the complaint be signed. However, you may file an unlicensed activity complaint over the phone by calling 1-800-HALT-ULA.

Yes, generally the statute of limitations (SOL) is six years from the last date of treatment. This means the entire investigation and finding of probable cause needs to be completed prior to the expiration of the SOL. However, there are exceptions. You may file a complaint that is over six years old, but it may be closed. For more information regarding statute of limitations, section 456.073(13), FS., please visit this site:  456.073(13)

Not normally. However, if law enforcement is investigating the department’s investigation may be delayed.

If the licensee is disciplined, the department or regulatory board may impose one or more of the following penalties:

  • reprimand
  • fine
  • restriction of practice
  • continuing education probation
  • suspension
  • revocation

The department may enter into an alternative to discipline action which includes mediation or citation.

The person filing the complaint and the healthcare practitioner will be notified periodically, in writing, of the status of the complaint. (It is important the department be advised of any address change.)

  • Fee disputes (i.e. broken or missed appointments, refunds)
  • Billing disputes (It is the responsibility of consumers to know the terms of their insurance coverage and approved providers.)
  • Personality conflicts
  • Bedside manner or rudeness of practitioners

For additional information, please visit this site: Consumer Services.

Please visit the complaint portal at: Florida Health Care Complaint Portal

Yes. However, if we do not receive enough information to move forward with an investigation the complaint will be closed. Also, you cannot be updated as to the status of the complaint.

Before filing a complaint with the Department, please send a certified letter to your doctor requesting your medical records. The signed green card will be your proof of requesting your medical records. If you have not received the requested records after 30 business days, please file a complaint and include a copy of the letter and a copy of the signed green card to our office. Be sure to keep a copy of everything for your records.

Yes. The fee must not exceed $1.00 per page for the first 25 pages and $0.25 per page thereafter.

Yes, be sure to make a copy as the department cannot send you the records we receive.