You’ve worked hard and spent thousands of dollars at the nursing school—not to mention countless sleepless nights studying for exams. You’ve finally graduated top of your class and earned the license to practice. Congratulations!
But despite your accomplishment, you can face disciplinary action that puts you at risk of losing the very license you’ve worked hard to earn. Knowing the actions or behaviors that can lead to disciplinary action against you may help you steer clear of trouble. Here are three missteps that can put your nursing license at risk.
1. If you are accused of professional misconduct
There is no doubt that nursing can be a stressful job, especially if the facility is understaffed and you have too many patients to take care of or long shifts. This notwithstanding, nurses, just like other healthcare providers, are required to exercise utmost professionalism when at work. An abusive conduct like patient neglect, verbal or physical abuse can amount to professional misconduct. Depending on the nature and severity of the misconduct in question, disciplinary action might include a suspension or dismissal of your practice license.
2. If you are convicted of certain crimes
A combination of work-related stresses and access to controlled substances can be tempting. However, attending to patients while intoxicated can be a very costly mistake. Likewise, a DUI conviction can have a great impact on your nursing career and, by extension, your practice license. And this is not all. Potential employers will be reluctant to hire you if you fail a background check.
3. If you act unethically
The importance of confidentiality in the healthcare industry cannot be overstated. Sharing your patient’s medical records with third parties can put your nursing license at risk.
Your nursing license is a symbol of years of sacrifice and determination. As such, it is important that you understand and avoid issues that can jeopardize it. And if you find yourself in trouble, familiarizing yourself with your legal options can help you safeguard your rights and interests.