Section 16. Applications for registration, signed and sworn to by the applicant, shall be made upon blanks furnished by the board. If an applicant furnishes the board with satisfactory proof that he is eighteen and of good moral character, and that he is a graduate of a high school or its equivalent, and has completed a four-year course in podiatry, or an accelerated course in podiatry of not less than one hundred and forty-four weeks of academic instruction, in a school of podiatry approved by the board, and holds a doctor's degree in podiatry from a school, college or university having the power to grant such degree, he shall, upon the payment of a fee to be determined annually by the commissioner of administration under the provision of section three B of chapter seven, be examined by the board as provided in section seventeen, and, if found qualified, shall be registered and shall receive a certificate as a registered podiatrist, signed by the chairman and secretary of the board. An applicant failing to pass an examination satisfactory to the board shall, if not disqualified under sections eighteen and nineteen, be entitled to be reexamined from time to time upon the payment of a fee to be determined annually under the aforementioned chapter seven provision for each such re-examination. No such applicant shall be registered unless he obtains a passing score as determined by the board. Every such certificate shall expire on the last day of the year for which it was granted, and said certificate may be renewed for the subsequent year without examination upon the payment of a renewal fee; provided, however, that the said podiatrist shall present satisfactory evidence to the board that in the preceding year he attended an educational conference or program, approved by the board, for not less than fifteen hours; and provided, further, that the board may exempt from this requirement those licensees who submit satisfactory proof that they were unable to attend an approved educational conference or program due to illness or other good cause.
Upon failure to make payment of such fee on or before the last day of the year, such registration shall expire. The board, not later than five days thereafter, shall so notify him. Upon application by a podiatrist whose registration has expired within six months after the date of such notice and upon payment of a fee to be determined annually under the aforementioned chapter seven provision in addition to the regular fee for renewal, such registration shall be reinstated by the board.
Any person who shall present to the board a certified copy or certificate of registration or license which was issued to him after examination by a board of registration in podiatry or in medicine in any other state, where the requirements for registration are in the opinion of the board equivalent to those of this commonwealth, may be registered and given a certificate of registration in this commonwealth without a written examination; provided, that such state accords a like privilege to holders of certificates of registration issued in this commonwealth, and that the applicant has not previously failed to pass the examination required in this commonwealth, and that he has been engaged in the reputable practice of podiatry continuously for not less than five years immediately preceding his application, and that he intends to reside and practice podiatry in this commonwealth. The fee for such registration shall be determined annually by the commissioner of administration under the provision of section three B of chapter seven.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, the board shall require as a condition of granting or renewing a podiatrist's certificate of registration, that the podiatrist apply to participate in the medical assistance program administered by the secretary of health and human services in accordance with chapter 118E and Title XIX of the Social Security Act and any federal demonstration or waiver relating to such medical assistance program for the limited purposes of ordering and referring services covered under such program, provided that regulations governing such limited participation are promulgated under said chapter 118E. A podiatrist who chooses to participate in such medical assistance program as a provider of services shall be deemed to have fulfilled this requirement.
Any applicant aggrieved by the refusal of the board to approve a podiatry school under this section shall be entitled to have the reasonableness of such refusal reviewed by a justice of the superior court whose decision shall be final. Any school of podiatry within the commonwealth approved by the board may be inspected by the board subsequent to a thirty-day notice of such inspection and if, upon such inspection, it is the opinion of the board that said approved school has lowered its standards below those established by the board, the school, after notice and hearing, may be disapproved. The board shall forthwith establish standards to be met by colleges, universities or podiatry schools and when, in the opinion of the board, such standards have been met by any college, university or podiatry school, a certificate of approval shall be awarded to it; provided, that if at any time such approved college, university or podiatry school has, in the opinion of the board, lowered its standards below those established by the board, such certificate, after notice and hearing, may be revoked by the board and said commissioner.
Any college, university or podiatry school desiring to be approved for the purposes of this section may file with the board a written request for the approval of such college, university or podiatry school and thereupon a public hearing shall be seasonably granted by the board and a written decision made by it within twenty days after the termination of such hearing and the applicant for such approval shall be notified of such decision. A written decision of the board refusing to approve any college, university or podiatry school shall not become effective until thirty days after written notice of such decision is given to the college, university or podiatry school seeking such approval. Every such college, university or podiatry school aggrieved by such refusal shall have the right to file a petition in the superior court for Suffolk county to revise or reverse the decision of the board. Notice of the entry of such petition shall be given to the board and all proceedings connected therewith shall be according to rules regulating the trial of civil causes without juries. The court shall hear the case and finally determine whether or not such approval shall be granted or revised.
If such a petition is so filed within the aforesaid period of thirty days said decision of the board shall not become effective unless and until a final decree affirming said decision is entered upon the aforesaid petition.