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Common reasons why nurses may need to defend their licenses

Being a nurse is not something you decided on the spur of the moment. You may have dreamed about it as a child or realized you wanted to be part of this noble profession as a young adult. In either case, you remember the years of effort, study, late nights and tuition bills to reach your goal, and now you fear your license may be in danger.

While the Arizona State Board of Nursing calls many nurses before its disciplinary hearings, there are only a few specific reasons why a board would suspend or revoke a nurse's license. Usually, this drastic action is for the well-being of patients. Nevertheless, if you have concerns about the fate of your career, seeking legal counsel is always a good option.

Actions that may result in a revoked license

An increasingly common reason why nurses lose their licenses is that they divert medications. The removal of drugs from the medicine room is carefully regulated, yet many nurses cannot resist the lure. This is often because of addiction issues, and you may be better off seeking help than waiting until someone traces missing narcotics back to you.

Of course, patient privacy is an important right, and nurses who violate that privacy risk disciplinary action. Some common ways a nurse might breach this trust include:

  • Gossiping about patients
  • Talking to the press about the condition of a patient
  • Telling your neighbors about a patient on your shift
  • Posting patient pictures or information on social media

Finally, gross negligence that results in the injury or death of a patient may bring you in front of the licensing board. In fact, accusations of negligence can also include minor offenses, and these complaints may be the most difficult for you to fight.

You don't have to fight alone

Because the lives and safety of patients are often in your hands, society holds you and your colleagues to a strict code of conduct. Avoiding intentional breaches of medication codes, privacy laws and patient care protocol may sound easy. However, even if you successfully avoid these pitfalls, someone may still accuse you of wrongdoing that will jeopardize your career and perhaps your freedom.

You do not have to wait until you receive a summons to appear before the Board before seeking help. If you suspect someone has filed a complaint against you, the advice of a professional may prove invaluable. An attorney with a reputation for successfully defending nurses will advocate for you, giving you the personal attention you need to resolve your case with the most positive outcome possible.

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