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10 Ways to Lose Your Nursing License

10 Ways to Lose Your Nursing License

NursingLink

Although we would like to believe that every nurse is a good person with good intentions, we can’t ignore the fact that every year, state nursing boards revoke dozens of licenses. While some of these men and women lose their ability to serve as nurses because of non-nurse related activities, others suffer the consequences of patient endangerment or worse. The threat of having your license revoked is ever-present, and it is important to know just what activities can take it away.

Of course, there are many more reasons your nursing license may be revoked, and the decision is ultimately up to your state board. Be sure to regularly familiarize yourself with your state’s laws and procedures.

1. Addicted Nurse Not in Good Recovery Program

We’ve all heard the story – the nurse with the back pain who gets prescribed Viodin. After her pain has subsided, she slips herself a little extra pain-killer on the side. And then a little more. And more still. Soon, she is addicted and it’s getting out of control. While abusing narcotics is reason enough to lose your nursing license, many board will suspend your license and require you enter an addiction recovery group. There are even recovery groups just for nurses in this position.

If you complete your therapy and remain clean, you can retain your license. However, if you refuse to enter recovery or continue to abuse drugs/alcohol while in recovery, your state boar can revoke your license. Because nurses are near a infinite number of prescriptions, employers know that some may be tempted to indulge. So think again if you are toying with the idea of slipping a few pills under the table.

2. Impersonating Another Licensed Practitioner

Believe it or not, this happens. And employers sometimes don’t catch it for years. A wannabe nurse may have a felony conviction that will prevent him from getting a license, or she may have had her own license revoked in the past. Whatever the case, identity theft is plausible if these “nurses” can obtain the correct papers. Whatever license you may or may not have will be immediately revoked by your state board, and that will stay on your record.

Next: Diversion of Drugs >>


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  • Photo_user_blank_big

    jewejono

    about 6 years ago

    2 comments

    I agree with several of the nursing comments that I have read--Only God can judge us--Our private lives are our own in certain respects --the doctor should have been fired for using hospital equipment for personal pleasure!!!! Nurses are scapegoats for every complaint out there. we are even accountable when a doctor gives us the wrong directive and we obey--who has the bigger license here? I learned (while taking my Bachelor 's) that the population of nurses is the largest work force in the country yet it is also the most splintered. Now that is a very sad fact. If we came together as nurses think of the strength we would have to set our standards and gain the respect that is deserved!!!! Nurses are nurses LPN's and RN's except for the fact that one requires more education than another and more responsibility than another and one cannot function without the supervision of another. I worked very hard to get my license and I will not allowanyone else to destroy it--I am sure I am capable of doing that myself if I felt so inclined!!! One problem I see is that we as nurses can't seem to be proud of where and who we are. Doctors do not seem to have a problem referring patients to specialists because the problem is out of their scope of practice and knowledge yet nurses are constantly bickering about who is better, the LPN or the RN. The bottom line is look at your scope of practice . If you are not happy there then change it--Grow bigger--get more education--find your niche --excell in that niche and be a part of a team instead of a rogue player.

  • Purple_and_blue_place_max50

    Oceana

    about 6 years ago

    3228 comments

    Give me a break. Just because your a nurse doesn't mean your a saint. You do your job to the highest degree, care for your patient. But your private life is just that. Who are we ..you and I or anyone else to play judge and decide what someone should or shouldn't do. I am pretty sure that no one is squeaky clean here and if we looked there is something we could all condemn in one anothers lives but only God can do that. I am not surprised that society feels this way but I am surprised when I hear other nurses climbing up their horses ready to ride and pass judgement.

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    judyp

    about 6 years ago

    2 comments

    In today's society, becoming a nurse takes on so much more than just being labeled a nurse. You are held to such high standards, and I think that anyone who decides to enter into this field should seriously consider the importance of that. I have worked too hard all these years to have my reputation or my license tarnished by doing something stupid, and that includes all 10 of these. In essense, it is called "toeing the line" and using common sense. Just remember what it took to get to this point. I don't worry about what I do in my spare time, because I use good judgement and don't want anything to screw up what I have worked so hard for! If these nurses get into trouble, they do it to themselves and don't consider the consequences of their actions. I don't have any sympathy for them! You are always going to have rules, everywhere you go, so follow them and take pride in yourself and your profession.

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    AnnMarieT

    about 6 years ago

    4 comments

    I'm a CMA, where I work the Clinicians and other staff members refer to the nursing staff as "Nurses" regardless if we are CMA's, LPN's or RN's. When someone calls and asks me if I'm a nurse, I tell them that I am part of the nursing staff, never do I say I'm a "Nurse". What is appropriate in all cases?

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    opal1973

    about 6 years ago

    2 comments

    Ok I agree with 9 out of 10 on this one. Really, we should NOT have our licenses revoked for what we do when not at work. I mean, I know of a Doctor who was caught having sex on the endoscopy table and didn't get fired. Oh he was found there while his wife was in labor in another location. Yet here is a nurse who loses her license for doing something completely legal on her own time. It's true that we should hold ourselves to a higher standard. There's a whole lot of should's in life though. Are we not allowed to be happy at home because it may look bad to the board? What if she had worn a mask? Would it count then? Are we being true to oursleves in either case? There are a lot of people who keep nurses down with their prudential thinking. Perhaps that is why we don't get the respect we deserve, we don't demand it. We allow other people define who we are. Personally, I think she should sue the board for discrimination. It's not as if she was hosting a porn site in a patient's room.

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    Account Removed

    about 6 years ago

    may be she was considering it patient teaching...oh alright ...no.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    about 6 years ago

    okay it was unprofessional conduct and we should all be held accountable to our professional practice if we are on the clock or not. Nursing is not a job it defines who we are... or at least it should.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    about 6 years ago

    I wonder if she "played doctor"?

    no really...

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Corrine

    about 6 years ago

    2 comments

    I think these areas are very important and should be taken seriously. Many persons including nurses believ that they are ONLY nurses at work; after there shift ends they are no longer nurses, its like they have totally different lifes, they talk whatever and do whatever. As nurses, we need to take responsibility for our actions; if we have a problem seek help; before we can take care of others, we need to take care of ourselves.

  • Imgp0108_max50

    tjbart

    about 6 years ago

    16 comments

    I feel that nurses and the nursing profession are not respected enough by the healthcare industry, patients, and even other nurses themselves. Nurses who steal drugs, abuse patients, break the law, etc. are giving nurses a bad name and adding to the disrespect of the profession. I entered into nursing with high hopes and pride in being a nurse. I soon found out what nursing is really all about. We are used and abused by the healthcare industry. They expect one nurse to do the work of three and to do everything perfectly including keeping the patient safe at all times! One person can only do so much and that is when mistakes happen. This is why I'm going back to working as an office nurse. Nurses who practice neglectfully in any way knowingly should have their license revoked or they should not have entered into the nursing profession to begin with!!!

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    kasdetroit

    about 6 years ago

    4 comments

    nursing is a challenging, rewarding and stressful career. nurses using drugs is a reality of life in this day and age. i agree what you do on your own time is your business until you come to work impaired, under the influence and the LAW gets involved, then you are in a different leauge. Addiction is a disease and addicts in denial are the worst . But there are programs to protect nurses when they make mistakes before the board gets involved

  • Tara17th_max50

    Crimsonandclover_85

    about 6 years ago

    58 comments

    Thats unfreakin' believeable...what does this have to do with the kind of Nurse that she is!!! Whatever someone chooses to do in their OWN time is their business not the Nursing Boards!

  • It_s_crunchtime_______006_max50

    RochelleRN

    about 6 years ago

    6 comments

    The issue of patient neglect is what made me leave nursing home/geriatric nursing. I could not stand to see the patients not being taken care of. The quality of nursing care in nursing homes is awful. Unfortunately, working with the elderly is my favorite of all the positions I have held. I left geriatrics and got into HIV/AIDS care, working for the county clinic that was established for outpatient HIV/AIDS care. I saw mistreatment of patients there as well. I agree that a lot of times nurses are overworked and have to assume the responsibility of administratioin as well as the nurse's aides....when you have worked long hours and have to do it all sometimes things can fall between the cracks. I agree that the nursing facility should be liable for some of it. But there are a lot of nurses that are just working to get a paycheck and don't do what is required to ensure quality of care for patients. And I think this is wrong. There is also a lot of drug stealing going on in the nursing home and this is a very real problem that affects the patient as well as othe nurses working with a nurse that does this. If you've ever been through a FBI investigation for drugs that were stolen, you know that it is one of the most horrifying things to have to go through. This article was enlightening...I hope other nurses take it to heart....I know I did.

  • Hattie_max50

    hattieryan

    about 6 years ago

    14 comments

    As a nurse of 15 years, I have seen many of the above violations occur and how sad it is to think that these are our "peers" and we are considered professionals. Nurses, stay vigilant and remember that it could be us or our family who is the patient that is affected by one of these violations.

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    oldschool

    about 6 years ago

    2 comments

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