Nearly 200 Temporary Medical Licenses Issued in Oklahoma so far During Pandemic

Apr 27, 2020

Credit Oklahoma Watch

Oklahoma’s state medical board has approved almost 200 doctors for temporary licenses during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

An executive order from Gov. Kevin Stitt allows the board to approve 90-day critical care licenses for out-of-state physicians. As of last week, 192 doctors had been approved.

Many are primary care physicians, but there are also several emergency medicine doctors and specialists from neurologists to infectious disease specialists in the mix. 

Medical board member Dr. Mark Fixley does not expect they will be needed, though.

"I suspect most of these doctors will never work in Oklahoma because we've not seen any surge of hospitalizations related to this pandemic at all," Fixley said during a meeting of the Oklahoma Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision.

Fixley said many could end up offering telemedicine services if Oklahoma doctors need to focus their resources.

"The issue will be after the pandemic is ... over with or minimized to go through there and see which ones will actually terminate and which ones perhaps will then want to extend that temporary license to a full license," said medical board Executive Director Lyle Kelsey.

The medical board has also approved temporary licenses for respiratory therapists, physician assistants, physical therapists and an occupational therapist so far.