When a patient is harmed by a negligent doctor, nurse, hospital or other health care provider or institution they deserve some measure of justice. This can come by way of compensation, either through a settlement or jury award, as in medical malpractice litigation. It can also come in the form of provider discipline.
State health-licensing boards are responsible not only for conducting investigations of providers who’ve received complaints, but also for disciplining providers found to be violating the principles underlying their professional license. This may mean license suspension or revocation, or perhaps a verbal warning. Hopefully the discipline is commensurate with the harm the physician has done. That, at least, is the hope. Unfortunately, investigation of providers doesn’t always achieve its intended purpose.